- Guillermo Chacón, president of the Latino Commission on AIDS, opens Turning the Tide Together for U.S. Hispanics, a hub of the International AIDS Conference.
- Lynn Videka, dean of the NYU Silver School of Social Work, welcomes attendees to New York University.
- Miriam Vega and Vincent Guilamo-Ramos provide perspective on the impact of HIV/AIDS on Latinos.
- Guilamo-Ramos discusses the HIV/AIDS continuum of care.
- Panelists of researchers and representatives of community-based organizations react to a speech by Anthony Fauci of the National Institutes of Health, given at last summer’s International AIDS Conference.
- The second panel of the day—made up of researchers and AIDS activists—discuss the right mix of interventions required to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic for Latinos.
- A member of the audience asks a question of panelists.
- Panelists pose for a photo at the end of the day’s discussions.
An International AIDS Conference hub event was held for the New York metro area on Wednesday, January 23, at the Kimmel Center, and featured a dialogue among researchers, physicians, local public health officials, and people living with HIV on what needs to be done to turn the tide in the HIV/AIDS epidemic for Latinos in New York City, nationally, and around the world. The event—Turning the Tide Together for U.S. Hispanics: Rebuilding our HIV Prevention Toolbox—was co-sponsored by the Center for Latino Adolescent and Family Health (CLAFH) at NYU's Silver School of Social Work and the Latino Commission on AIDS.
"Latinos remain disproportionately affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and warrant greater attention with regard to prevention and treatment," said CLAFH Co-Director and NYU Silver School Professor Vincent Guilamo-Ramos. While opening the conference, Guilamo-Ramos noted that one goal of the hub was to bring pieces of last summer's International AIDS Conference to New York City with a specific focus on Latinos.
Part of the day "discussion addressed how to better connect Latinos to existing prevention and treatment in order to turn the tide in HIV/AIDS for U.S. Latinos. Vega said the behavioral component of treatment is crucial to ensuring Latinos are diagnosed and do not fall out of treatment at any point in care. She said "accessibility, availability, and acceptability" of existing tools are needed within the Latino community.
Panelists reacted to two presentations from the International AIDS conference, both of which were played at January 23 event. The first talk from Dr. Anthony Fauci of the National Institutes of Health, summarized key advances in basic and clinical science over the epidemic's 30-year course. Biomedical interventions will only work with adherence, so biomedical treatments must be integrated with behavioral interventions.
National Institutes of Health, summarized key advances in basic and clinical science over the epidemic's 30-year course. Biomedical interventions will only work with adherence, so biomedical treatments must be integrated with behavioral interventions.
The following panelists responded to Fauci's talk:
Dr. Robert Fullilove, Columbia University
The second video clip showed the speech of Phill Wilson, founder of the Black AIDS Institute. Wilson discussed communities disproportionately affected by the disease and acknowledged that many voices need to be part of the HIV epidemic conversation in the United States.
The following panelists responded to Wilson's talk:
Daniel Leyva, Latino Commission on AIDS
The importance of young people in the HIV epidemic was a reoccurring theme throughout the day. "We need to keep an eye on 20 to 24 year olds," said Guilamo-Ramos. This group is the only at-risk population with an increasing rate of new HIV diagnoses compared to other age groups.
People asked repeatedly: How can young people be involved in this conversation and linked to care? "Young people are not accustomed to health care of any kind," said Marrero. She said youth need a one-stop shop approach to care.
The Affordable Care Act was also mentioned several times in relation to the cascade of care, along with anticipated budget cuts that will affect community-based organizations and researchers. Fullilove called the Affordable Care Act the "biggest structural change" to care. He acknowledged that the cascade will be modified, but community-based organizations and researchers need to become part of that conversation.
Elcock was optimistic as there is "a lot to be excited about" regarding the latest news and research in HIV/AIDS, along with how far society has come in the battle against the disease. The complexity of ethnic communities, however, poses a challenge for community-based organizations, and organizations need to continue to evaluate their programs and be able to change with new developments in the fight against the disease.