• DSHS HIV/STD Program

    Post Office Box 149347, MC 1873
    Austin, Texas 78714

    Phone: (512) 533-3000

    E-mail the HIV/STD Program

    E-mail data requests to HIV/STD Program - This email can be used to request data and statistics on HIV, TB, and STDs in Texas. It cannot be used to get treatment or infection history for individuals, or to request information on programs and services. Please do not include any personal, identifying health information in your email such as HIV status, Date of Birth, Social Security Number, etc.

    For treatment/testing history, please contact your local Health Department.

    For information on HIV testing and services available to Persons Living with HIV and AIDS, please contact your local HIV services organization.

15th Texas HIV-STD Conference - 2:30 Tuesday Breakout Sessions

A2: HIV Rapid Testing, San Antonio Room

This presentation will provide HIV/STD contractors with an overview of the HIV rapid testing process and an increased awareness of the experiences of two rapid testing programs (Austin and Houston) in order to better inititiate rapid testing processes in their own agencies. Knowledge of the process and lessons learned from two seasoned providers will help to build community-level capacity.

John Harborth
Communicable Disease Unit Manager
Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services
Austin, Texas

John Harborth has 16 years of experience in public health, serving as Disease Intervention Specialist and STD Supervisor for the Dallas County Health and Human Services Department, STD Program Manager for the Waco/McClennan County Public Health District, STD/HIV Training Specialist at the Texas Department of Health, and most recently Communicable Disease Unit Manager for Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services. As a trainer and manager, he has experience working with most public health STD and HIV prevention programs across Texas and many major public health programs in the Southeast Quadrant of the United States. He has learned from them, and shared among them the common challenges and various approaches to reducing disease burden in their communities.

Susan Rokes
HIV Prevention Program Director
Planned Parenthood of Houston
Houston, Texas

Susan Rokes is the HIV Prevention Program Director for Planned Parenthood of Houston and Southeast Texas where she directs the Counseling and Testing Program as well as the Prevention Case Management Program. She previously worked with the Texas Department of Health (now DSHS) in Field Operations in Austin and with the Regional TDH office in Houston as the HIV Prevention Coordinator and supervisor for Disease Intervention Specialists. She has ten years of experience in the HIV/STD field.

B2: Texas Department of Criminal Justice Healthcare and HIV Programs, San Marcos Room

The Texas Departent of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) currently houses over 150,000 offenders in over 100 prison facilities throughout the state. The inner workings of prison operations are not easily uncovered. Many myths and inaccuracies exist about the nature of healthcare provided to incarcerated persons. This presentation will focus on the managed healthcare system that serves TDCJ and specifically the care provided to those patients who are HIV-positive. Attendess will understand the geographic distribution of the system and patients as well as the current disease demographics. TDCJ HIV care policy and procedure including testing, treatments, and dischrge planning will be discussed with accompanying relevant data. Also, time will be taken to discuss navigating through the TDCJ system to obtain necessary clinical information. This presentation should be helpful to anyone that encounters released offenders.

Owen J. Murray, D.O., M.B.A.
Chief Physician Executive
University of Texas Medical Branch Correctional Managed Care
Huntsville, Texas

Dr. Owen Murray has nine years of correctional medicine experience both at the direct provider level and the administrative level. His area of expertise is in the development of health care delivery models specific to the incarcerated population and environment.

Dr. Murray is on the speaker's bureau of GlaxoSmithKline.

C2: Houston Mobile STD Clinic: "Where is the Clinic Located Today?", Sabine Room

In order to have a positive impact on STD morbidity rates, STD prevention programs are challenged to provide adequate STD services that are accessible to individuals at risk. In order to provide appropriate services, STD programs must implement innovative strategies that allow increased accessibility to STD services for both the general population at risk as well as for individuals who are difficult to reach.

The City of Houston provides expanded STD clinical, laboratory, and disease intervention services to at risk populations through the STD Program's Mobile Clinic. This presentation provides an overview of STD Mobile Clinic operations and how collaborative efforts with Health Department and community partners increase client accessibility to STD services. The presenters represent the different components of STD clinical services provided on the mobile clinic, including project coordination, nursing, laboratory, and DIS services. Each presenter provides an overview of their area of responsibility, including challenges and successes encountered while providing STD services.

The use of the STD Mobile Clinic is an innovative approach that allows the Houston STD program to provide comprehensive STD services at different venues resulting in an increased level of comfort for the clieint receiving STD services. Collaboration between the STD Mobile Clinic and the Department's community-based contractors enhances the STD Program's ability to serve clients who would not otherwise self-report to traditional STD clinics. The STD Mobile Clinic uses a patient flow process that incorporates components of a FAST TRACT system to maximize the number of clients receiving services.

Michael R. Thomas
Public Health Advisor
Houston Department of Health and Human Services
Houston, Texas

Michael Thomas is a Public Health Advisor with the Houston Department of Health and Human Services HIV/STD Prevention Program. He has over 21 years of experience providing technical assistance, programmatic, and supervisory experience to various local STD prevention programs across the United States. He currently serves as the Project Coordinator for STD Mobile Clinic activities.

Filomena P. Snow, R.N., M.S.N., A.N.P.
Nurse Practitioner
Houston Department of Health and Human Services
Houston, Texas

Filomena Snow is a certified Adult Nurse Practitioner with previous experience in urgent care and internal medicine. She has provided STD services to the U.S. Navy in an urgent care facility. She also worked in the Urgent Care Clinic at the VA Medical Center in Hampton, Virginia where she provided nursing care for patients with suspected HIV infection. She has been with the City of Houston Health Department for seven years providing family planning and STD services.

D2: Co-Morbidity of HIV and STDs Among Texas Surveillance Data, Trinity B

In 2006, the DSHS HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch completed a computerized match of data from the HIV/AIDS and STD surveillance systems. The result was a data set comprised of individuals who were diagnosed with syphilis, gonorrhea, or chlamydia during 2001-2005 who were also previously reported as HIV-positive. This presentation will summarize the Texas co-morbidity data including demographics, geographic and trend analyses, and the available behavioral information.

The presence of HIV increases a person's susceptibility to new infections like an STD, and conversely, the presence of an STD can increase a person's HIV risk. Thus the continued risky sexual behavior indicated by this data has important implications not only for the HIV-positive patient's health but also for the potential spread of HIV to their partners. This first look into HIV/STD co-morbidity data will provide an opportunity to begin understanding this important population in Texas.

Ed Weckerly, M.S.
HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch
Department of State Health Services
Austin, Texas

Ed Weckerly is an epidemiologist with the DSHS HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch. He earned a bachelor of arts at Marquette University and a master of science at Southwest Texas State University. Weckerly has over eight years of experience as an HIV/STD epidemiologist for DSHS. In recent years he has been involved in such projects as Threshold Monitoring for Syphilis Elimination, the MSM Prevalence Monitoring Project, and annual Texas HIV/STD Surveillance Reports.

E2: Texas AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) 101 for Service Providers, Trinity A

This presentation will introduce service providers and clients to the three components of the Texas HIV Medication Program: eligibility, medication order processing, and recertification. A major focus will be on what constitutes a complete and accurate application for enrollment. Program staff will discuss methods and examples on how to get your client's application for medication assistance approved quickly.

Dwayne R. Haught, M.S.N., A.C.R.N.
Texas HIV Medication Program
Department of State Health Services
Austin, Texas

Dwayne Haught has been working in the field of HIV since 1982. He managed a large, HIV-specialty, primary care clinic in Austin for nine years. He has been the manager of the Texas HIV Medication Program for the past five years.

John Allen
Operations Manager
Texas HIV Medication Program
Department of State Health Services
Austin, Texas

John Allen has worked for the Texas HIV Medication Program since 1990. He assists the Program Manager with the oversight of day-to-day operations within the THMP.

Katherine Wells
Data Manager
Texas HIV Medication Program
Department of State Health Services
Austin, Texas

Katherine Wells is the Data Manger for the Texas HIV Medication Program at DSHS. She has been with DSHS since 2001, the last two of which have been with THMP.

Becky Ruiz, B.S.W.
Client Services Manager
Texas HIV Medication Program
Department of State Health Services
Austin, Texas

Becky Ruiz is the Client Services Manager for the Texas HIV Medication Program at DSHS. She has worked in the field of HIV/AIDS for 16 years, 14 of which were as a Case Manager for AIDS Services of Austin. She has been with THMP since 2005.

F2: Planning for Change: Ryan White Services in Texas, Concho Room

The Ryan White CARE system in Texas has changed by small amounts following each reauthorization of the CARE Act. As the legislation dictates the direction of the care model/system, the changes made have been to meet the letter of the law, while maintaining as closely as possible the system built in the early days. Are we at the edge, the cusp of something new? Is dramatic change imminent or inevitable?

This presentation provides a forum for discussion of strategies to address anticipated changes due to CARE Act reauthorization and other challenges within the economic environment and health care industry. The history of changes to the CARE Act, funding, medical advancements, and demographics of the epidemic are examined along with the planning response to past changes.

Christopher Hamilton, M.P.H.
Planning Coordinator
Brazos Valley Council of Governments
Bryan, Texas

Christopher Hamilton joined the Brazos Valley Council of Governments in June 2005 as a Planner for Ryan White Title II funds. His areas of interest include access and quality improvement, particularly within the HIV/AIDS community and care system. At present, he is conducting an analysis of quality based on indicators from the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI.org).

G2: Birth Defects Among Children Born to HIV-Positive Mothers, Pecos Room

The DSHS HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch is currently implementing the Enhanced Perinatal Surveillance (EPS) project. The overall goal is to reduce perinatal HIV infection in Texas by improving EPS data collection, by using EPS data to identify gaps in perinatal transmission prevention and by evaluating perinatal HIV transmission prevention efforts in Texas. As part of the EPS project, the HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch is conducting a data linking project with the Birth Defects Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch to explore the correlations between the use of antiretroviral therapy (ART) by HIV-1 pregnant women and the birth prevalence of structural congenital birth defects among their offspring. The correlation between HIV-1 pregnant women receiving ART and their infants born with structural congenital birth defects will be compared to women who did not receive ART during pregnancy but delivered an infant with structural congenital birth defects.

Studies suggest that treatment of HIV positive mothers and their infants with zidovudine may substantially reduce the risk for perinatal HIV transmission. But according to the CDC, any potential risks for adverse outcomes associated with use of antiretrovirals during pregnancy should be considered, even though study findings suggest that treatment with ZDV substantially reduces the risk of perinatal HIV transmission. This presentation will further expand on current research being performed in this subject area, provide preliminary findings specific to Texas and present the study research methodology. Additionally, the participant will learn about the collaboration of efforts and resources necessary to perform this type of research study.

Elvia Ledezma
HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch
Department of State Health Services
Austin, Texas

Elvia Ledezma is a graduate of the Texas A&M School of Rural Public Health. She has experience working with diverse populations and various public health areas. Ledezma has conducted applied research related to the promotora health worker model, evaluated diabetes prevention programs and performed research on issues related to immunizations. She is currently an Epidemiologist with DSHS and is leading the efforts on enhanced perinatal surveillance.

H2: Changing Sexual Scripts as Prevention: Three Levels of Intervention, Ballroom A

This presentation will define and overview the development of the three levels of sexual scripts. Intrapsychic, interpersonal, and cultural levels of sexual script development will be overviewed in children, adolescents, and adults. The group will discuss the cultural sexual scripts in American culture and the co-cultures we target. Third, the implications for prevention work when there is incongruence among these levels of sexual scripts will be covered. Last, the interventions audience members use in their agencies and the levels of sexual script the intervention targets will be discussed.

Mary Banski, Ph.D.
Curriculum Developer
HIV/STD Comprehensive Services Branch
Department of State Health Services
Austin, Texas

Dr. Mary Banski has been doing HIV/STD prevention work for three years and public health work for five. She has over 15 years of study in the field of interpersonal and family communication. She is interested in the intersection of cultural and societal influences, such as the media and the impact on family and interpersonal relationships. Her recent work at DSHS has been in the implementation of the protocol-based counseling program, revising the PCM/CRCS course and assisting the Public Information and Education Team with special projects. For the past nine months, she has been involved in a special workgroup examining partner elicitation in Texas.

I2: Changing Risk Behaviors: What You and Your Patients Need to Know, Ballroom B

HIV, STIs, and hepatitis viral infections are all related to participation in unhealthy risk behaviors. Billions of dollars are being spent each year on intervention related to HIV, hepatitis, and STIs with limited resources allocated to promoting primary prevention. In the mid Seventies, little information about the liver was being taught in medical schools and practically nothing in our school systems. How can we expect individuals to change what they do not know? If one does not understand the importance of essential life sustaining liver functions and how this miraculous organ can be damaged by viruses, STIs, drugs, and alcohol, how can individuals participate in their own healthcare and avoid liver damaging activities?

Extensive evaluations have successfully demonstrated that once informed of a few important liver functions they can relate to in their daily lives, individuals are motivated to avoid liver damaging activities and to modify their lifestyle behaviors.

Quick, easy, and memorable information and communication techniques provide caregivers, educators and outreach workers with effective tools and consistent messages to encourage their patients/clients to assess their own risk of exposure to infections and to avoid activities that put them at risk. Promoting primary prevention is essential to bring HIV, hepatitis, STIs and substance abuse under control.

Thelma King Thiel, R.N., B.A.
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Hepatitis Foundation International
Silver Spring, Maryland

Thelma King Thiel is the founder, chairman, and CEO of the Hepatitis Foundation International (HFI), an organization dedicated to promoting liver wellness and the adoption of healthy lifestyle behaviors to bring hepatitis and other blood borne pathogens under control. She organized and served as COO of the American Liver Foundation for 15 years. Upon her retirement in 1994, she founded the HFI. She was the co-founder of the Digestive Diseases National Coalition, founder of the National Viral Hepatitis Roundtable, and the National Nurses Advisory Council. Recognized as The Liver Lady, Thiel was featured in a PBS Documentary, “The Visionaries,” and has produced a series of 13 videos and unique communication techniques on liver wellness and prevention of blood borne pathogens being used extensively by nurses, physicians, teachers, drug abuse counselors, healthcare providers and hundreds of SAMHSA grantees.

J2: TX/OK AETC Border Issues Track: Reflexiones Positivas para Mujeres: Intervención Efectiva Mujeres Positivas en México, Wedgewood Room

This presentation will be conducted in Spanish.

Reflexiones Positivas de Mujer es una intervención efectiva en la prevención del VIH dirigida a mujeres mexicanas que viven con VIH en Mexico. Esta es una intervención que ofrece a los participantes habilidades para desarrollar destrezas y transferir información de prevención a una intervención efectiva en la reducción del riesgo y en el cambio de comportamiento del VIH. Esta Intervención esta diseñada y es culturalmente apropiada para mujeres mexicanas o latinas en Mexico o cualquier otro sitio donde la lengua principal es el español y el horizonte cultural de las participantes es el de la cultura latina. Esta intervención a nivel grupal está creada a base de una investigación en la cual los elementos principales son siempre los mismos y las características claves pueden ser adaptadas con actividades de prevención del VIH. Los resultados esperados de Reflexiones Positivas de Mujer son modificar el comportamiento riesgoso y reducir el riesgo en la adquisición o transmisión del VIH.

Positive Reflections of a Woman is an effective intervention in the prevention of HIV directed to Mexican women who live with HIV in Mexico. This is an intervention that offers its participants abilities in developing skills and transferring prevention information to an effective intervention in the reduction of risk and behavior change of HIV. This intervention is designed and is culturally appropriate for Mexican or Latin women in Mexico or any other location wherein the principal language is Spanish and the cultural horizon is Latin. This group-level intervention is created based on research in which the principal elements are always the same and the key characteristics can be adapted to HIV prevention activities. The expected results of Positive Reflections of a Woman are modification of risky behavior and reduction of risk of acquisition or transmission of HIV.

Sonia Gonzalez-Ruiz, C.P.
Frente Nacional de Personas Viviendo con VIH (frenpavih)
Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas, Mexico

Sonia Gonzalez es Vicepresidenta del Frente Nacional de Personas Viviendo con VIH/SIDA en Mexico. Ha participado en varias reuniones nacionales e internacionales abogando a favor de las personas viviendo con VIH en Mexico y Latinoamérica. Sonia Gonzalez es una activista política que con sus acciones ha logrado modificar leyes, acuerdos y normas que afectan y repercuten a las personas viviendo con VIH/SIDA en Mexico.

Sonia Gonzalez is Vice President of the National Front of People Living with HIV/AIDS in Mexico. She has participated in several national and international conferences advocating for people living with HIV in Mexico and Latin America. Sonia Gonzales is a political activist who through her actions has accomplished modification of laws, agreements, and norms that affect people living with HIV/AIDS in Mexico.

Daisy del Carmen Balam-Herrera
Frente Nacional de Personas Viviendo con VIH/SIDA Sinaloa
Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico

Daisy del Carmen es una actvista en el campo del VIH/SIDA en Mexico, especialmente en el Estado de Sinaloa. En sus negociaciones con el Congreso Estatal logró conseguir que se integre al curriculum de educación de los niños a nivel primaria la implementación del curso de VIH/SIDA.

Daisy del Carmen is an activist in the HIV/AIDS field in Mexico, particularly in the state of Sinaloa. In her negotiations with the state Congress, she accomplished the integration of a course on HIV/AIDS into the curriculum for primary-level education.

Maria Salas Neri
Frente Nacional de Personas Viviendo con VIH/SIDA en la Ciudad de Mexico
Delegación Albaro Obregon, Mexico DF, Mexico

Maria Solis Neri es fundadora del Frente Nacional de Personas viviendo con VIH/SIDA. Su trabajo es con mujeres positivas a nivel nacional en Mexico. Tiene una activa labor en la Clínica 25 del Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social, dirigiendo y conduciendo Grupos de Apoyo para personas positivas. Maria Solis es parte fundamental y clave en el movimiento politicosocial de mujeres y VIH en Mexico.

Maria Solis Neri is founder of the National Front of People Living with HIV/AIDS. Her work is with positive women at the national level in Mexico. She works actively in Clinic 25 of the Mexican Institute of Social Security, directing and conducting support groups for positive people. Maria Solis is a fundamental and key part of the sociopolitical movement of women and HIV in Mexico.

Oscar Gonzalez, M.S.
Centro de Capacitación y Educación para la Prevención y Tratamiento del VIH/ETS
Mexico DF, Mexico

Oscar Gonzalez es fundador del Centro Nacional de Capacitación, Educación para la Prevención y Tratamiento del VIH/ETS en Mexico. Ha trabajado en varios proyectos Nacionales e Internacionales como Investigador, Proveedor de Servicios y Administrador de recursos para el VIH/SIDA. Oscar Gonzalez ha desarrollado su area de experiencia en la Construcción de la Capacidad, Entrenamientos, Educación, Relaciones Nacionales e Internacionales y Analisis de Políticas del VIH. Actualmente está colaborando con varias organizaciones civiles y agencias locales, estatales y federales en la transferencia de tecnología para crear, desarrollar e implementar Intervenciones Efectivas en la Prevención del VIH/ETS en Mexico y para Latinos en Estados Unidos de América.

Oscar Gonzalez is the founder of the National Center for Training & Education for the Prevention and Treatment of HIV/STD in Mexico. He has worked on several national and international projects as a researcher, service provider, and HIV/AIDS resource administrator. Gonzalez has expertise in the areas of construction of training, education, national and international relations, and HIV policy analysis. He is currently collaborating with several organizations and local/state/federal agencies in the transfer of technology to create, develop, and implement effective interventions in the prevention of HIV/STD in Mexico and for Latinos in the United States.


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Last updated May 22, 2013