• 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.

HIV-STD Insider

Headlines from the DSHS HIV/STD Program

HIV/STD Insider

Change in HIV Testing at the DSHS Lab

Update: The date for the change in HIV testing at the DSHS Lab has moved to October 1, 2016.

Effective September 1, 2016, the DSHS Laboratory in Austin began using the new HIV diagnostic testing algorithm. HIV screening is now performed by the 5th generation HIV Ag-Ab Multiplex using BioPlex 2200 for HIV detection. Results of this test distinguish between the presence of HIV antibodies or antigen in one specimen. Additional supplemental tests are automatically performed to confirm the presence of antibodies to HIV-1 or HIV-2 and HIV-1 p24 antigen by a Nucleic Acid Amplification Test (NAAT) performed by the Dallas County Department of Health and Human Services. A single HIV report will be released with interpretation guidelines. The serum specimen acceptance criteria for the testing will not change.

HIV Ag-Ab assay is an important development for HIV testing that improves the ability to detect HIV infections earlier. The new diagnostic testing algorithm will perform better than the current algorithm for identifying HIV infections by reducing turnaround time and reporting results for all of the individual HIV analytes (HIV-1 Ab, HIV-2 Ab, and HIV-1 p24 Ag). With the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of the GeeniusTM HIV 1 / 2 Supplemental assay for use as the second test in this algorithm, the DSHS laboratory adopted this algorithm.

HIV-1 EIA for Oral Fluid (Avioq) and Western Blot (WB) for serum and Dried Blood (Bio-Rad) and Oral Fluid (OraSure) samples were discontinued effective September 1, 2016. Multispot was discontinued and replaced with GeeniusTM for confirmation for HIV-1 / HIV-2 antibodies.  NAAT will be performed only as a follow up test for the HIV screening using the new HIV diagnostic testing algorithm and will not be offered as a standalone test at the DSHS Laboratory.

To learn more, contact the DSHS Serology Team at 512-776-7657.

Post Date Tuesday, September 20, 2016


Foundations of HIV Counseling and Testing Training

A Foundations of HIV Counseling and Testing (FCT) training is scheduled for November 30-December 2 in Austin. This course is required for all new DSHS HIV Prevention counseling/testing staff and new testing and linkage supervisors unfamiliar with Protocol Based Counseling (PBC)/FCT. The goal of FCT is to improve the ability of HIV prevention staff to provide HIV testing, counseling, and linkage to care. The course covers DSHS standards for giving test results and linkage to care for the HIV+ client. To learn more about this course, visit the training page.

To register for this training, visit Texas TRAIN.

Post Date Tuesday, September 20, 2016


DSHS Support Documents for CDC Funding Announcement PS 17-1704

The DSHS HIV/STD/TB/Viral Hepatitis Unit has published the following support documents for potential applicants to the recently released Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) PS 17-1704: Comprehensive High-Impact HIV Prevention Projects for Young Men of Color Who Have Sex with Men (YMSM) and Young Transgender (YTG) Persons of Color

‎The documents include an orientation to the state rules, policies, procedures and requirements potential applicants must follow. We have also posted information on HIV epidemiology and the continuum of care for the populations that need to be targeted.

Processes for obtaining required Attachments B (Health Department Targeted HIV Testing/Partner Services Letter of Agreement) and F (Health Department Letter of Support) to include in your CDC application are below. All potential applicants must attest to their understanding of the Texas rules, policies and procedures and requirements included in the support documents.

  1. Please contact Dolores Alvarez, Manager HIV/STD Prevention Services Group to schedule a conference call to review required Attachment B (PDF : 192 kb) and Attachment F (PDF : 139 kb). All conference calls must be held by August 31, 2016.
  2. Prior to the scheduled phone call, each applicant’s leadership and project management must have previously reviewed and attested compliance with state laws, rules, regulations pertaining to HIV testing and Partner Services and issues outlined in Attachment B.
  3. TWO days prior to the scheduled phone call, the applicant must send a summary or an abstract of the applicant’s proposal, detailing intent to apply for either CATEGORY A or CATEGORY B and listing the proposed service areas to Dolores Alvarez.

The CDC has scheduled a Pre-Application Technical Assistance Conference Call for the PS17-1704 on August 23 at 1:00 p.m. CST. This call provides potential applicants the opportunity to ask CDC representatives specific questions related to the FOA. Pre-registration is not required for this conference call. Please check the PS17-1704 website for call logistics.

We look forward ‎to working with you on this initiative, and thank you for your continued provision of high-quality HIV prevention services for all Texans.

Post Date Friday, August 16, 2016


Overflow Accommodations for the 2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference

2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference logoIf you are unable to secure a reservation at the Renaissance Hotel, site of the 2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference on October 4-6, 2016, please secure a reservation at one of the following overflow hotels:

Hyatt House Austin Arboretum
10001 North Capital of Texas Highway, Austin, Texas 78759
Reservations by Phone: 866-974-9288
Reference Group Code: G-DHS1
Online Reservations
Reservations Deadline: September 2, 2016
Rate: $135 per night plus tax
Rate includes complimentary: full, hot breakfast buffet daily; Wi-Fi throughout the property; parking; and shuttle service within 5 mile radius.

Holiday Inn Express and Suites
10711 Research Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78759
Reservations by Phone (Direct): 512-346-5555
Reservations by Phone (Toll-Free): 800-465-4329
Group Name: Texas HIV/STD Conference
Reservations Deadline: September 12, 2016
Rate: $135 per night plus tax
Rate includes complimentary: shuttle to/from the Renaissance Arboretum Hotel; parking; Wi-Fi Access in room and throughout hotel; hot breakfast served daily; and welcome reception on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Post Date Friday, August 19, 2016


New Draft HIV Service Category Standards and Monitoring Tools

The DSHS HIV Care Services team continues to write minimum standards and associated monitoring tools for the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) HIV service categories. This process included coordination with Administrative Agencies receiving Ryan White/State Service Funds and Ryan White Part A Grantees. The purpose of these standards is to ensure that minimum activities are being provided to all people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) in Texas. The purpose of the monitoring tools is to assist providers in providing quality care in each service category to PLWHA wherever services are being provided.

Final draft Service Category Final Standards and Monitoring Tools have been written for the following service categories:

  1. Local AIDS Pharmaceutical Assistance (LPAP)Standards (PDF : 375 kb) | Monitoring tool (Word : 48 kb)
  2. Emergency Financial Assistance (EFA) - Standards (PDF : 358 kb) | Monitoring tool (Word : 40 kb)

As part of this process we are asking providers, consumers, and interested stakeholders to review these documents and provide comments. We value your opinion and hope that you will take the time to review and give feedback. Please send your comments to Teena Edwards. Public comment will be accepted until September 19, 2016.

Post Date Friday, August 19, 2016


2016 Texas HIV/STD Program Award Nominations Due August 24

2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference logoHave you or someone you work with made an award-worthy contribution to HIV/STD prevention, care, or treatment in Texas? The 2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference Planning Committee is now seeking nominations for the Casey S. Blass Award for Excellence and Achievement in HIV/STD Prevention and Care. All nominations must be received by Wednesday, August 24 at 5:00 p.m.

The Texas Public Health Association and DSHS will present this award to the winning nominee during the Texas HIV/STD Conference on October 4-6. The award recipient will win an engraved plaque and up to $2,500 in reimbursement for registration and travel expenses to attend an HIV/STD-related conference of the recipient’s choice. The nomination form and selection criteria are available at the conference website.

Post Date Friday, August 19, 2016


DSHS Pharmacy Branch Closed for Inventory on August 31

The DSHS Pharmacy Branch will be closed on Wednesday, August 31 for fiscal year-end inventory. The Pharmacy Branch warehouse will not process any program medication orders on this day in order to conduct the annual physical inventory count. Please prepare accordingly and place your medication orders prior to Tuesday, August 30. The branch will resume order processing as usual on Thursday, September 1.

If you have questions, please contact Francela Brazil Williams.

Post Date Friday, August 19, 2016


OraSure Launches Hepatitis C Grant Program

OraSure has established an HCV Grant Program designed to foster innovative approaches to Hepatitis C (HCV) testing by providing an opportunity to evaluate models that demonstrate the effective use of rapid HCV testing in public health settings. OraSure encourages applications from public health entities that will use the program to help demonstrate the effective use of rapid HCV screening in identifying positive patients and linking them to care.

Who should apply?

  • Public health entities that have not deployed rapid HCV testing
  • Public health professionals who are looking at implementing the use of rapid HCV testing in non-traditional settings
  • Community-based organizations considering the use of rapid HCV testing in their clinics or outreach events

What will the winning applicants receive?

  • Up to 300 OraQuick® HCV Rapid Antibody Test kits
  • Up to $5,000 in funding to support data collection and analysis

Grant applications must be completed and submitted by September 1, 2016. For full information, please visit the OraSure grant website.

Post Date Friday, August 19, 2016


CDC Offers Public Health Policy Trainings

CDC recently announced the launch of two new courses focusing on policy development for public health.

The Policy Analysis course introduces the learner to the CDC policy process and provides specific instruction on the policy analysis component of the process. Instructional content will result in the learner having a better understanding of what policy analysis is, its use in assessing policy options, and how it can contribute to public health's role in policy.

The Policy Evaluation course provides instruction on using evaluation methods throughout the policy process. This introductory course will help the learner apply the CDC Evaluation Framework to conduct an evaluation of adopted policies that may impact public health.

Both courses are available on Texas TRAIN and CDC TRAIN.

Post Date Friday, August 19, 2016


Healthy Relationships Facilitator Training

A Healthy Relationships Training of Facilitators has been scheduled for August 23-26, 2016 in San Antonio. Healthy Relationships is a five-session, small-group intervention for men and women living with HIV/AIDS. It is based on Social Cognitive Theory and focuses on developing skills and building self-efficacy and positive expectations about new behaviors through modeling behaviors and practicing new skills.

To learn more and to register for this training, visit the Effective Interventions website. Registration closes on August 9.

Post Date Monday, August 8, 2016


Webinar: HIV Testing Recommendations for Women: An Important Step to Achieve Perinatal HIV Elimination

The CDC is sponsoring the webinar “HIV Testing Recommendations for Women: An Important Step to Achieve Perinatal HIV Elimination” on Friday, August 19, 2016 from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. CT. The webinar will cover the rationale for HIV testing in women, the updated CDC testing algorithm, how updates to the HIV algorithm can impact care providers when ordering and interpreting HIV tests, and examples of missed opportunities in HIV testing.

Continuing education for this activity is pending. See final announcement for details.

To learn more and to register, visit the webinar website.

Post Date Monday, August 8, 2016


Equity in Texas: Bold Beginnings, Courageous Paths, Igniting Our Future

The Texas Health and Human Services (HHS) Center for Elimination of Disproportionality and Disparities is hosting the HHS Cross-Systems Summit on August 16-17 at the Embassy Suites Hotel and Conference Center in San Marcos. The 2016 theme is Equity in Texas: Bold Beginnings, Courageous Paths, Igniting Our Future.

This year's summit celebrates the history of equity work in Texas and honors the people, leaders, agencies, organizations, and communities that are creating sustainability for the future of equity work in Texas and beyond. The summit features breakout sessions both days and will be a great opportunity to collaborate around ways to address disproportionality and disparities and improve outcomes for communities across Texas.

Space is limited, so register today. To learn more, visit the 2016 Cross-Systems Summit event page or contact the event coordinators: info@cedd-cross-summit.com or 877-451-8700.

Post Date Friday, July 15, 2016


Training: Ethics of Risk and Harm Reduction

An Ethics of Risk and Harm Reduction training sponsored by Cardea and DSHS has been scheduled for November 4 in Austin. This training seminar and client panel focuses on principles and strategies of harm reduction related to substance use and sexual behavior.

Participants will learn to:

  • Identify the continuum of risk related to substance use and sexual behavior.
  • Differentiate between harm reduction and risk reduction in theory and in practice.
  • Discuss legal and ethical issues related to harm reduction.
  • Apply client and community centered principles and strategies to help those at risk.

The interactive panel will help you enhance services by engaging directly with local clients.

To learn more and to register, visit the TRAIN Texas website.

Post Date Friday, July 15, 2016


2nd Annual Strength Conference for Men Living with HIV

The 2nd Annual Strength Conference for Men Living with HIV will be held November 11-13 at the Embassy Suites Love Field in Dallas. The conference is a weekend offering a safe space for support, empowerment, and education, along with fun and fellowship. This three-day event will be filled with educational seminars, speakers, breakout sessions, and an opportunity to build skills and leadership, share experiences, mentor new leaders, and support veteran leaders. The conference is presented by AIDS Walk South Dallas, Inc.

To learn more or to register, visit the conference registration page.

Post Date Friday, July 15, 2016


National HIV Testing Day 2016: HIV in Texas

National HIV Testing Day fact sheetNational HIV Testing Day is June 27. To reinforce the importance of HIV testing, DSHS today has released a fact sheet on the state of HIV infection in Texas. This fact sheet provides the most current figures for those infected with HIV including:

  • numbers of people diagnosed and estimated to be infected
  • modes of exposure
  • racial makeup
  • geographic locations
  • age of infection

To learn more, see the National HIV Testing Day 2016 Fact Sheet (PDF : 122).

Post Date Monday, June 27, 2016


2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference

2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference logoThe Texas Department of State Health Services will host the 2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference on October 4-6, 2016 at the Renaissance Hotel in Austin, Texas. This biennial event is designed for HIV/STD health professionals who serve Texans living with and affected by HIV and other STDs. The conference typically draws 800 to 1,000 HIV/STD health professionals from throughout Texas.
Conference information is posted at the conference website. Upcoming deadlines include:

  • Attendee Registration – early bird registration of $150 per person ends July 4, 2016
  • Texas HIV/STD Student Research Award – applications are due July 16, 2016
  • Texas HIV/STD Program Award – nominations are due July 16, 2016
  • Hotel Reservations – reserve a room by September 12, 2016 to get the group rate of $135 per night

For more information, please contact hivstd@dshs.state.tx.us.

Post Date Monday, June 27, 2016


THMP Advisory Committee Seeks New Members

DSHS is seeking assistance in identifying applicants for membership on the Texas HIV Medication Program (THMP) Advisory Committee. The Committee advises the Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner and DSHS in the development of THMP procedures and guidelines, reviews the goals and aims of the program, evaluates ongoing program efforts, and recommends both short-range and long-range goals and objectives for medication needs. The following positions are up for appointment:

  • a pediatrician who is actively engaged in the treatment of infants and children who are infected with HIV;
  • an administrator for a public, non-profit hospital that provides services to individuals who are infected with HIV;
  • a social worker who works with individuals who are infected with HIV and
  • two consumers who are diagnosed with HIV.

To learn more or apply for a position, please contact Juanita Salinas at (512) 206-5974 or juanita.salinas@dshs.texas.gov.

Post Date Monday, June 27, 2016


National HIV Testing Day in Texas - 2016

The following is a list of National HIV Testing Day (NHTD) events taking place around Texas. DSHS wishes to thank all of the organizations that sent event information to the Texas HIV/STD Insider. Please note that this list is presented for informational purposes only; DSHS does not necessarily sponsor or endorse any of the events and/or activities listed.

This annual awareness event encourages persons at risk for HIV infection to receive voluntary HIV counseling and testing. You can find resources for your NHTD event on the AIDS.gov NHTD page.

 

AUSTIN

The City of Austin Targeted Testing and Linkage to Medical Care will be testing three days in observance of National HIV Testing Day at Walgreens Capitol Plaza, 5345 I-35 Frontage Road in Austin.

  • Thursday, June 23 from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m.
  • Friday, June 24 from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, June 25 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

To learn more, contact Lisa McCarty at 512-972-5635 or Lisa.McCarty@AustinTexas.gov.

 

BAY CITY

Matagorda Episcopal Health Outreach Program (MEHOP) will be hosting a wrap around our city red ribbon event for HIV awareness on Monday, June 27 at 101 Ave F North in Bay City. To learn more, contact Frankie Cole at 979-245-2008 ext. 304.

 

CORPUS CHRISTI

Coastal Bend Wellness Foundation presents the 2nd annual ROCK YOUR STATUS event in collaboration with House of Rock: “Raise Your Voice Against Stigma.” This is a free show for all ages with giveaways, door prizes, and live music. The event will be held on Thursday, June 30 from 9:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. at House of Rock, 511 Starr Street in Corpus Christi. To learn more, contact Alison Johnson at 361-814-2001.

 

DALLAS

AIDS Arms, in partnership with Greater Than AIDS and Walgreens, will offer free rapid HIV testing:

  • Thursday, June 23 from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. at the Walgreens at 3802 Cedar Springs in Dallas
  • Friday, June 24 from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. at the Walgreens at 3802 Cedar Springs in Dallas
  • Saturday, June 25 from 10:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. at the Walgreens at 3802 Cedar Springs in Dallas

AIDS Arms will also offer free rapid HIV testing at two other locations:

  • Saturday, June 25 from 11:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. at Tekilas Diskotek, 10945 Composite Drive in Dallas
  • Sunday, June 26 from 11:00 p.m. to 3:00 a.m. at Station 4, 3911 Cedar Springs in Dallas

All events will have Spanish speaking staff available. To learn more, contact Alex Ortega at 214-521-5191.

Resource Center will offer HIV and syphilis walk-in testing on Monday, June 27 from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at 4012 Cedar Springs Road in Dallas. To learn more, contact JP Cano, Prevention Services Manager, at 214-540-4446 or jcano@myresourcecenter.org.

The Texas Black Women’s Initiative – Dallas Branch is observing National HIV Testing Day 2016 on Monday, June 27 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at William Blair Jr. Park, 3000 Rochester Street in Dallas. Show off your style by wearing a tutu and your fave tennis shoes. To learn more, contact JoAnn Searles at 469-291-2876.

 

FORT WORTH

AIDS Outreach Center (AOC) will offer a free colorful "Love is Love" National HIV Testing Day 2016 t-shirt to each person who tests (while supplies last) on Monday, June 27 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at AOC, 400 North Beach Street in Fort Worth. The rapid HIV test and syphilis test are both free. AOC serves Tarrant, Erath, Johnson, Palo Pinto, Somerville, Wise, and Parker counties. To learn more, contact Tia Burgess at 817-916-5221.

 

HOUSTON

Change Happens will be launching their “Say Yes to the Test” Campaign. The campaign will consist of HIV counseling, testing, and referral, condom distribution and social media blitz surrounding HIV facts and locations to be tested. On June 27, Change Happens will collaborate with Houston Area Community Services (HACS) and the African American State of Emergency Task Force (AASOETF) to provide testing and supportive services in two downtown Houston locations: Peggy Park (Main and Wheeler) and McDonald’s (Main and Gray). To learn more, contact Sam Brown at sbrown@changehappenstx.org.

 

KATY

Spring Branch Community Health Center’s West Houston clinic will provide free confidential HIV testing on Monday June 27 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 19333 Clay Road in Katy. Bring an ID (drivers license, Texas ID, Student ID, passport etc.) to get tested. To learn more, contact person Sarah Soliz at 713-462-6565 ext 197 or ssoliz@sbchc.net.

 

LAREDO

The City of Laredo Health Department will hold several events for National HIV Testing Day this year:

  • Free HIV testing on Thursday, June 23 from 3:00 to 7:00 pm. at the Walgreens at 2219 East Saunders in Laredo.
  • Kickoff on Thursday, June 23 from 10:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. at Chelsea’s and Taboo Night Clubs, 1308 Iturbide Street in Laredo.
  • “Catch the Sound Not the Virus” Music and Health Fest on Saturday, June 25 from 11:00 am – 4:00 pm. 2600 Cedar Avenue in Laredo.

To learn more, contact Araceli Perez at 956-795-4946 or aperez@ci.laredo.tx.us.

 

LONGVIEW

Wellness Pointe and Special Health Resources are collaborating for “Kicking for a Cause” to be held Friday June 25 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Broughton Recreation Center, 801 South Martin Luther King Boulevard in Longview. The event will feature free health screenings that include HIV, syphilis, hepatitis C, blood pressure, and blood glucose as well as a kickball tournament, music, and vendors from the community. To learn more, contact Lesia Manning at 903-212-4665 or Kendrick Hall at 903-387-8892.

 

Post Date Tuesday, June 21, 2016


Using Bicillin to Treat Non-Pregnant Individuals Diagnosed with Syphilis

DSHS is recommending the expansion of the use of Bicillin to include treatment of non-pregnant individuals diagnosed with syphilis. CDC is indicating that the Bicillin shortage is expected to be over by the end of July or early August. DSHS offers the following guidance:

  • Use Bicillin to treat all persons infected with syphilis who have a positive test result.
  • Use Bicillin to treat all pregnant women and women who are pregnant and have been recently exposed to syphilis (within the past three months) regardless of test results.
  • Ensure you are using short-dated Bicillin that will expire soon before you begin to use new orders of Bicillin.
  • Continue to use Doxycycline to treat non-pregnant partners who have been recently exposed, but who have not tested positive.
  • Do not place an order for more Bicillin than you will use in 2-4 weeks.

Follow the CDC 2015 STD Treatment Guidelines.  Persons with HIV infection and pregnant women do not need 7.2million units (mu) unless they have had syphilis >1 year or the duration of their syphilis infection is undetermined.  2.4 mu is adequate therapy for persons who have been infected with syphilis in the past year, even pregnant women and persons co-infected with HIV. ( www.cdc.gov/std/treatment/2010/genital-ulcers.htm#a5)

*The shortage is still in place; DSHS will be unable to fill significantly large orders. Please be prudent when placing orders.

Note: DSHS has received some 2.4mu pre-filled syringes. You will receive some with your order. Please note this and be sure the clinicians know. Since this is the first time DSHS has ordered 2.4mu pre-filled syringes, we would like clinicians and patient feedback re: ease of use, patient reaction, etc. Please send feedback to Tammy Foskey at tammy.foskey@dshs.state.tx.us.

Post Date Tuesday, June 21, 2016


Seeking Participants for AIDSinfo HIV/AIDS Guidelines App Usability Study

AIDSinfo is conducting an evaluation of the recently released AIDSinfo HIV/AIDS Guidelines app. The app, which is available for iOS and Android devices, provides access to the federally approved HIV/AIDS medical practice guidelines. The purpose of the evaluation is to assess the design and functionality of the app. Results from this evaluation will shape and inform future enhancements to the app.

If you are a health care professional and would like to help evaluate the app, please click here to fill out a preliminary screener [SurveyMonkey]. Those who are selected to participate will be compensated.

Post Date Tuesday, June 21, 2016


Our Thoughts on the Orlando Tragedy

The DSHS HIV/STD Prevention and Care Program staff and leadership, like many in the nation, are grieving over the tragedy that occurred in Orlando last weekend.

We are deeply saddened by this devastating attack that targeted LGBT individuals. We have worked for many years with LGBT communities to prevent disease transmission and to extend and save lives. We in the HIV/STD Prevention and Care Program have learned so much from our work with the community about strength and resilience. We are also saddened that the tragic loss of life includes so many Latinos, another community that is strong and resilient. In acknowledging this event, it is clear that work to reduce stigma and prejudice must continue.

Our thoughts and prayers  are with the families of those lost and injured.

Post Date Monday, June 20, 2016


35th Anniversary of First Report of AIDS

Earlier this month marked the 35th anniversary of the first CDC MMWR describing cases of a rare lung infection, Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP).  This edition of the MMWR  marked the first official reporting of what would become known as the AIDS epidemic. Much has changed in the years since that first report including amazing advances in prevention, treatment, and care. But many lives have been lost and too many others struggle with infection. Local organizations, health departments, health care providers, researchers, and others continue to work toward an AIDS-free generation.

The National HIV/AIDS Strategy (PDF) provides a guide for reaching that goal by calling for

  1. reducing new infections, in part by intensifying prevention efforts where AIDS is most likely to occur;
  2. increasing access to care by boosting care coordination and keeping track of patients right after diagnosis, to ensure treatment to keep viral loads low;
  3. reducing AIDS-related disparities and health inequities and
  4. achieving a more coordinated national response to HIV.

Post Date Monday, June 20, 2016


Anti-Retroviral Treatment and Access to Services (ARTAS) Training of Facilitators

An Anti-Retroviral Treatment and Access to Services (ARTAS) Training of Facilitators is scheduled for August 9-10 in Houston. ARTAS is an individual-level, multi-session, time-limited intervention with the goal of linking recently diagnosed persons with HIV to medical care soon after receiving their positive test result. ARTAS is based on the Strengths-based Case Management (SBCM) model, which is rooted in Social Cognitive Theory (particularly self-efficacy) and Humanistic Psychology. SBCM is a model that encourages the client to identify and use personal strengths; create goals for himself/herself; and establish an effective, working relationship with the Linkage Coordinator (LC).

To learn more and to apply to attend, visit the Effective Interventions website. The application will close on July 8.

Post Date Monday, June 20, 2016


What is Your Agency Doing for National HIV Testing Day 2016?

Monday, June 27 marks annual observance of National HIV Testing Day (NHTD), and we want to know what your plans are. Please e-mail a brief description of your planned event to Dan Warr no later than 5:00 p.m. on Monday, June 20. Be sure to include the following information:

  • Agency name
  • Brief event description
  • Date(s) and time(s)
  • Address
  • Agency contact person and contact information

The Texas HIV/STD Insider is compiling a list of NHTD events taking place around the state for publication prior to June 27. Be advised that information about these events may be shared with media outlets who contact DSHS to inquire about local NHTD activities taking place in Texas.

This annual awareness event encourages persons at risk for HIV infection to receive voluntary HIV counseling and testing. You can find resources for your NHTD event on the AIDS.gov NHTD page.

NOTE: This call is limited to special NHTD-related events only. Do not submit descriptions of regularly scheduled activities.

Post Date Friday, June 10, 2016


#AskTheHIVDoc Facebook Live with Univision

Got questions about HIV? Dr. Leandro Mena will be answering questions on Facebook Live for Univision today Friday, June 10 at 2:00 CT.

Dr. Mena is featured in the popular Greater Than AIDS YouTube series #AskTheHIVDoc. In this short, fun series, he and other top HIV docs cover an array of topics, including, "What's the difference between HIV & AIDS?," "How do you know if you have HIV?," "What does it mean to be 'undetectable'?" among others. Take this opportunity to see Dr. Mena before he comes to Austin to speak at the 2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference in October.

Join the conversation on Friday and submit your questions in the comments section. You can watch the full series on YouTube.

Post Date Friday, June 10, 2016


New Online CME Module: Healthcare Stigma Facing Transgender Individuals

Healthcare Stigma Facing Transgender Individuals is now available as a free, online module as part of the National Coalition for LGBT Health’s LGBT Health Training and Certificate ProgramTM. This module covers the impact of stigma on transgender individuals in healthcare settings. The module also will equip attendees to effectively engage transgender individuals who seek care. Upon successful completion of the module, participants will receive a certificate for 1.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM. Participants can take the module at their convenience.

Register now on the module website.

Topics and faculty:

  • Data collection, access to care, and HIV prevention and treatment for transgender individuals – Danielle Castro, Project Director, Center of Excellence for Transgender Health
  • LGBTQ cultural competency requirements for providers – Alison Gill, Senior Partner, The Parallax Group
  • Legal protections for transgender individuals, Section 1557, and the Affordable Care Act – Omar Gonzales-Pagan, Staff Attorney, Lambda Legal
  • Insurance practices impacting access to care for transgender individuals – Anand Kalra, Health Program Manager, Transgender Law Center

Credits Available:

  • Physicians: maximum of 1.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM
  • Nurses: 1.5 contact hours

For more information, please contact: Ryan Meyer – ryan@healthlgbt.org or 202.507.4735.

Post Date Friday, June 10, 2016


Texas HIV Medication Program Medication Advisory Committee Meeting June 17

The next Texas HIV Medication Advisory Committee meeting will be held on Friday, June 17 from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. at:

Austin State Hospital ( map)
Building 626 - Nifty Fifty Conference Room
4110 Guadalupe Street
Austin, Texas 78751
The meeting is free and open to the public.

Agenda

  1. Call to Order – Philip Keiser, M.D.
  2. Approval of previous meeting minutes (November 20, 2015) – Philip Keiser, M.D. and Committee
  3. Update on the Division for Disease Control and Prevention Services – Janna Zumbrun/Imelda Garcia
  4. Texas HIV Medication Program (THMP) Budget Update – DSHS Staff
  5. AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP)/State Pharmacy Assistance Program (SPAP) update reports – DSHS Staff
  6. Discussion of pilot program for Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) in those with HIV – Rachel Sanor
  7. Discussion considering the addition of new medications to THMP formulary – DSHS Staff
  8. Discussion of THMP third-party health insurance verification – Rachel Sanor
  9. Schedule next meeting – Philip Keiser, M.D.
  10. Public comments – Philip Keiser, M.D.
  11. Adjourn – Philip Keiser, M.D.

Post Date Thursday, May 26, 2016


Journal Seeks Articles for Mental Health & Substance Use Issues in HIV Infection Issue

The Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care (JANAC) plans to publish a special issue on the topic of Mental Health & Substance Use Issues in HIV Infection in early 2017. JANAC is seeking feature articles (including original research and review papers), as well as practice briefs, program briefs, case studies, interviews, and roundtable discussions. They are also interested in contributions from a variety of perspectives: nursing, basic science, medicine, epidemiology, public health, social work, legal-ethical, etc. If you have a manuscript (or would like to develop one) on this topic, please contact the JANAC Guest Editors John Brion or Jeanne Kemppainen.

The due date for submissions for the special is on or before August 31, 2016

Please submit through JANAC's electronic system and identify your submission for consideration for the special issue on Mental Health & Substance Use Issues in HIV Infection.

Submit your manuscript here.

Post Date Thursday, May 26, 2016


HIV Prevention Training Calendar

Upcoming HIV and STD training courses can be found on the TestTexas HIV Coalition event calendar. The calendar includes dates, locations and registration links for all upcoming training events. HIV prevention training announcements will also regularly be posted on the Insider. Several courses are already scheduled for the next few months:

Ethics of Risk and Harm Reduction

This seven-hour training will begin with a didactic presentation of information about harm and risk reduction related to substance abuse and sexual behavior. It will also feature a panel consisting of clients from the surrounding area sharing their experiences with service providers in order to inform them of service delivery. During this course, participants will identify the continuum of risk related to substance use and sexual behavior. Participants will also differentiate between harm and risk reduction strategies in theory and in practice. The course will also examine the legal and ethical issues related to harm reduction. In addition, participants will apply client and community-centered principles and strategies to help those at risk. Finally, participants will consider how to enhance services after hearing feedback directly from clients from within the community.

This course will be held:

Gender and Sexual Diversity (GSD)

GSD is a cultural competency training. It is a two-day training seminar on competently serving members of the gender and sexually diverse community. Participants will learn how to: identify differences between sexual orientation and gender identity, share info among providers on trends observed in GSD populations, practice counseling skills and culturally competent care, and examine impact of stigma on health of GSD populations.

his course will be held:

CLEAR

CLEAR is an evidence-based, health promotion intervention for males and females ages 16 and older living with HIV/AIDS or at high-risk for HIV. CLEAR is a client-centered program delivered one-on-one using cognitive behavioral techniques to change behavior. The intervention provides clients with the skills necessary to be able to make healthy choices for their lives.

A CLEAR Training of Facilitators will be held:

Presentation and Facilitation Skills Training

This two-day course focuses on developing the skills necessary to present information and/or to facilitate a group or class. If you are facilitating evidence-based intervention groups, leading workshops, or presenting educational sessions to the community, this course is for you. You will receive tips and techniques on how to be more effective when you speak or facilitate a group. Prerequisite: Presentation and Facilitation Skills Pre-course (this on-line course will be available soon>

This course will be held:

Post Date Tuesday, May 24, 2016


ARIES Technical Difficulties

DSHS is currently experiencing technical difficulties with the AIDS Regional Information and Evaluation System (ARIES) reports. Starting on or around May 12, ARIES reports began producing inaccurate results impacting Administrative Agencies, HIV care providers, and other ARIES users in Texas. These inaccuracies have continued to appear sporadically as we attempt to repair this issue. Administrative Agencies have been instructed to not utilize or publish data from ARIES until further notice, including reporting to Planning Councils and to the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).

The ARIES Data Team continues to conduct report testing and is receiving testing results from around the state. The results are widely mixed and the data team are still seeing some critical reporting errors. At this time, the cause of this issue and estimates on a timeline for resolution are unknown. DSHS will follow up with Administrative Agencies and HRSA once the reporting issue is corrected.

SHS formally requests that any payment, reimbursement, or billing submissions that utilize ARIES data for verification or validation be honored without delay and that ARIES data verification be waived. The waiver of data verification is only a temporary measure and we ask that you reconcile and validate these submissions and make any necessary adjustments once ARIES is again producing accurate reports.

lease contact Jennifer Nield at jennifer.nield@dshs.state.tx.us or 512-533-3061 if you have questions. DSHS apologizes for this inconvenience and thanks you for your continued cooperation.

Post Date Wednesday, May 18, 2016


Hepatitis C Kills More Americans than Any Other Infectious Disease

Deaths associated with hepatitis C reached an all-time high of 19,659 in 2014, according to new surveillance data released today by CDC.

A second CDC study, published recently in Clinical Infectious Diseases, shows that annual hepatitis C-related mortality in 2013 surpassed the total combined number of deaths from 60 other infectious diseases reported to CDC, including HIV, pneumococcal disease, and tuberculosis. Further, both studies use data from death certificates, which often underreport hepatitis C, so there likely were even more hepatitis C-related deaths than these numbers suggest.

To learn more, visit the CDC website.

Post Date Thursday, May 12, 2016


Funding Opportunity for Leadership Training for People of Color Living with HIV

The “Leadership Training for People of Color Living with HIV” funding opportunity is a three year cooperative agreement supported by the DHHS Secretary’s Minority AIDS Initiative Fund (SMAIF). The purpose of this program is to support the development and delivery of training programs for people of color living with HIV of all ages, to support full, active and engaged participation on planning bodies, medical and support care teams, boards of directors, and other mobilization efforts to address the goals of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy: Updated to 2020 (NHAS 2020). The program will have three main training activities: 1) To conduct a yearly national training for 10-15 transgender women of color living with HIV; 2) To conduct three regional trainings for 20-25 people each per training year for people of color living with HIV; and 3) To conduct a yearly national “Train the Trainer” (TOT) for up to 13 teams of two, with each team consisting of a PLWH leader and a partner from a local organization. The funding amount for this cooperative agreement will be $854,000 per year.

Entities that are eligible to apply include public, non-profit and for profit entities including health departments, State and local governments, community health centers, hospitals, medical centers, colleges and universities, faith-based and community-based organizations, and Tribes and tribal organizations.  Applicants must have two to three (2-3) years of experience training people living with HIV in leadership and planning, and must demonstrate the capacity to recruit, train and collaborate with organizations that focus on all target populations to be trained.

Go to Grants.Gov to get the application package.

All applicants are encouraged to participate in a technical assistance (TA) webinar for this funding opportunity. The technical assistance webinar will be held May 17 from 12:00 noon to 2:00 p.m. Central Time. The purpose of the webinar is to assist potential applicants in preparing applications that address the requirements of the FOA. Participation in the pre-application TA webinar is strongly encouraged to ensure the successful submission of the application.

  • Dial-in Phone Number: 1-877-952-6578; Passcode: 2668381#
  • Join the webinar on the day of the event on the HRSA website.
  • HAB staff will respond to the questions during the Q&A portion of the webinar. Slides from the webinar will be available within 7 business days on the TARGET Center website.

Announcement Number: HRSA-16-186

Post Date Thursday, May 12, 2016


Funding Opportunity for Building HIV Care and Prevention Capacity in Southern Metropolitan Areas

The HRSA HIV/AIDS Bureau (HAB) recently announced a funding opportunity announcement (FOA) for Building HIV Care and Prevention Capacity in Southern Metropolitan Areas. Supported through the Department of Health and Human Services Secretary’s Minority AIDS Initiative Fund (SMAIF), the Health Resources and Services Administration/HAB is accepting applications for a fiscal year (FY) 2016 SMAIF project entitled Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program (RWHAP) Building Care and Prevention Capacity: Addressing the HIV Care Continuum in Southern Metropolitan Areas. The purpose of this program is to support a single organization that will serve as the Coordination and Technical Assistance Center (CTAC) to provide technical assistance and capacity building/service delivery resources to four Part A jurisdictions located in southern metropolitan areas serving targeted minority populations to improve outcomes along the HIV care continuum.

Eligible organizations include public entities (including state, local, and Indian tribal governments); institutions of higher education; non-profit organizations (including faith-based, community-based, and tribal organizations); and academic health science centers involved in addressing HIV-related issues on a national level and within governmental public health structures. Applicants must have a minimum four year history of developing and disseminating technical assistance to RWHAP recipients and subrecipient providers.

Go to Grants.Gov to get the application package.

All interested applicants are encouraged to participate in a technical assistance webinar for this funding opportunity. The technical assistance webinar is scheduled for May 18 at 12:00 noon Central Time. The purpose of the webinar is to assist potential applicants in preparing applications that address the requirements of the FOA. Participation in the pre-application TA webinar is strongly encouraged to ensure the successful submission of the application.

  • Dial-in Phone Number: 1-877-952-6578; Passcode: 2668381#
  • Join the webinar on the day of the event on the HRSA website.
  • HAB staff will respond to the questions during the Q&A portion of the webinar. Slides from the webinar will be available within 7 business days on the TARGET Center website.

Announcement Number: HRSA-16-187

Post Date Thursday, May 12, 2016


Texas HIV Medication Program Adds Two New Drugs to Formulary

The Texas HIV Medication Program (THMP) recently added two new drugs to the HIV medication formulary. The combination therapy medications Odefsey and Descovy were recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat HIV-1 infection. Odefsy is in stock and available now while Descovy will be in stock and available for clients on May 5. Contact THMP at 800-255-1090 to learn more.

Post Date Wednesday, May 4, 2016


CDC Releases Updated nPEP Guidelines

CDC recently released Updated Guidelines for Antiretroviral Postexposure Prophylaxis After Sexual, Injection-Drug Use, or Other Nonoccupational Exposure to HIV , which updates and expands the 2005 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommendations for medical practitioners regarding nonoccupational postexposure prophylaxis (nPEP) use for persons in the United States. Updated Occupational PEP Guidelines, which address case management for persons with possible HIV exposure in health care settings, were published separately in 2013. Awareness of nPEP and its availability for both clinical providers and those who are eligible to receive it are critical to ensure that nPEP reaches those who need it most urgently.

To learn more, visit the GovDelivery website.

Post Date Wednesday, May 4, 2016


NASTAD Releases HIV Prevention Billing Coding Guide

NASTAD recently released a Billing Coding Guide for HIV Prevention: PrEP, Screening, and Linkage Services. The guide, developed in collaboration with a coding consultant and the HIV Medicine Association, will assist health departments and their contracted providers to navigate billing and reimbursement for HIV prevention services. Health department staff are encouraged to share this resource with providers in their jurisdictions.

Given the number of people covered by Medicaid and commercial insurance who are living with and at risk for HIV, NASTAD will continue to support health department efforts to maximize public and private payers to expand access to prevention and care services.

Please contact Amy Killelea with any questions.

Post Date Wednesday, May 4, 2016


Abstract Deadlines Extended for the 2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference

The deadline for submitting abstracts (research and standard) for the 2016 Texas HIV/STD Conference has been extended until Friday, April 29, 2016. Please visit the conference website to download the abstracts.

Post Date and Time Tuesday, April 5, 2016


HIV/STD Insider

HIV/STD Insider

Dan Warr, Editor

Sign up for email updates.

Texas HIV/STD Job Postings

September 20, 2016

Austin – DSHS TB/HIV/STD/Viral Hepatitis Unit seeks Viral Hepatitis Prevention and Surveillance Coordinator. Learn more

Austin – DSHS TB/HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch seeks Epidemiology and Supplemental Projects Group Manager. Learn more

Austin – DSHS Infectious Disease Prevention Section seeks Physician III/Infectious Disease Medical Officer. Learn more

Dallas – Legacy Counseling Center seeks:

  • Case Manager
  • Housing Director

To learn more or to submit your resume, e-mail Legacy

Houston – Houston Area Community Services (HACS) seeks:

  • Nurse Manager
  • Psychiatric – Mental Health Nurse
  • Clinical Case Manager (LCSW)
  • Community Health Worker
  • Eligibility Worker
  • Dental Assistant
  • Dentist Part-time

Learn more [HACS]

 

August 19, 2016

San Antonio – Bexar County Department of Community Resources seeks HIV Contract Analyst. Learn more [Bexar County]

 

August 8, 2016

Austin – David Powell Clinic seeks Medical Social Services Supervisor. Learn more [CommUnityCare]

 

July 15, 2016

Austin - DSHS TB/HIV/STD/Viral Hepatitis Unit Health Communications and Community Engagement Group seeks Program Specialist II. Learn more [DSHS]

Dallas – AIDS Arms seeks Prevention Program Director. position filled

Dallas – The Council on Alcohol & Drug Abuse seeks HIV Early Intervention Case Manager (bilingual preferred). To learn more or to submit your resume, e-mail Sonny at the Dallas Council

San Antonio – Alamo Area Resource Center seeks Case Manager. To learn more or to submit your resume, e-mail Dawn at AARCSA

Oakland, California – CARDEA seeks Training Coordinator. Learn more [CARDEA]

June 20, 2016

Dallas – AIDS Arms seeks Eligibility Specialist. position filled

 

June 10, 2016

Austin – DSHS TB/HIV/STD/Viral Hepatitis Unit seeks Manager for TB/HIV/STD Epidemiology and Surveillance Branch. Learn more

Austin – DSHS TB and Refugee Health Services Branch seeks Program Specialist V/Team Lead for Program Evaluation Team. Learn more

Austin – Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services seeks Health & Human Services Planner II. Learn more [City of Austin]

  

May 26, 2016

Austin – DSHS TB/HIV/STD/Viral Hepatitis Unit seeks Program Specialist VI. Learn more

 

May 24, 2016

Austin – City of Austin seeks Public Health Program Specialist III (DIS Data to Care Position). Learn more [City of Austin]

San Antonio – Alamo Area Resource Center seeks Case Manager. E-mail Dawn at AARCSA to learn more or submit your resume.

 

May 18, 2016

Corpus Christi – Corpus Christi-Nueces County Health District seeks Health District Program Manager (STD/HIV Clinic). position filled 

 

May 12, 2016

Dallas – AIDS Arms seeks:

  • Project Connect Risk Reduction Specialist- CRCS
  • Registered Nurse/Medical Case Manager

Learn more [AIDS Arms]

 

May 4, 2016

Austin – Wright Wellness House seeks Bilingual Case Manager and Housing Case Manager. To learn more or submit your resume, e-mail jobs@thewrighthouse.org
 
Dallas – AIDS Arms seeks Prevention Program Director. position filled 
 
Fort Worth – AIDS Outreach Center seeks Contract Counselor. Learn more [AIDS Outreach Center]

 

April 5, 2016

Austin - DSHS TB/HIV/STD/Viral Hepatitis Unit seeks Program Integration and Special Projects Coordinator. Learn more

Corpus Christi - Coastal Bend Wellness Foundation seeks Director of HIV Case Management. To learn more or to submit your resume, e-mail the Coastal Bend Wellness Foundation

Victoria - Victoria County Public Health Department seeks HIV/AIDS Resource Program Manager. position filled

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Last updated September 30, 2016