Examining the Impact of COVID-19 on Organizations Providing HIV-Related Services in California

The COVID-19 pandemic rapidly shifted how routine medical care was delivered and disrupted all aspects of everyday life, including HIV social and medical services. Our Policy Center conducted a qualitative study to understand how organizations serving people living with or at risk for HIV and their clients were affected by the pandemic as well as how agencies adapted to provide access to HIV-related services. We share an overview of our findings in this brief report.

Lens: HIV Prevalence and COVID-19 Vulnerabilities – A Data-Mapping Tool

The COVID-19 pandemic has renewed concerns about social and structural factors related to healthdisparities, including those related to HIV. The Lens tool is a partial response to an urgent need tounderstand whether elevated risk of COVID-19 disease and mortality among persons living withHIV (PLWH) results from related risk behaviors, a higher burden of comorbidities, and/or socialdeterminants of health. This tool can help decision-makers, community-based organizations andother stakeholders to access critical neighborhood-level information about the intersection ofsocio-economic and health vulnerabilities and HIV. The Lens portal also contains information onCOVID-19 case rates for counties where such information is available. We hope this ... [Read More];

SCHPRC San Diego Launch Meeting

On June 4, 2021, the Southern California HIV/AIDS Policy Research Center (SCHPRC) hosted a launchmeeting for San Diego County, organized on the heels of a regional listening session led by the NIHOffice of AIDS Research. During this launch event, we were able to focus on policy research needs in San Diego County and to engage in vital conversations about the most pressing needs related to HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted infections, viral hepatitis and overdose. This is a summary of our discussion.

The FDA is Considering a ban on Menthol Cigarettes and Flavored Cigars: Four Essential Points That Our Communities Need to Know Now

As many of you know, the FDA is considering a ban on menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars. The briefing document, written by Dr. Sabrina L. Smiley (We The People) and colleagues at the UC Merced Nicotine & Cannabis Policy Center, outlines four essential points from research and science that community organizations should know as they communicate with citizens and other organizations. This is a freely available resource, and has been written specifically to help ensure communities know the facts about this long-awaited decision. This flavor ban would ultimately help move us toward greater health equity.

Expanding PrEP Access for Immigrant Latino Men Who Have Sex With Men

HIV rates among Latino men who have sex with men are not decreasing at the same rate as they are decreasing among white MSM. This is a matter of concern as Latinx people are the largest racial/ethnic minority group affected by HIV in California. Currently, the California Department of Public Health in partnership with county health departments, community health centers, healthcare providers and non-profit service providers are collaborating to expand PrEP access throughout California to help curb HIV disease transmission. The state-funded payment assistance program for PrEP-related costs has been a key development in facilitating PrEP uptake. In this study, ... [Read More];

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