DC HIV/AIDS Prevention Programs
As you may know, HIV/AIDS has reached an epidemic level in the D.C. community. Currently more than 3% of D.C.'s population is living with HIV/AIDS- a prevalence rate higher than West Africa. According to the 2009 HIV/AIDS Epidemiology Report, this rate has increased 22% from 2006, signaling that a dramatic response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic in D.C. is necessary. It is important to note that the disease is not limited to a specific sexual orientation or demographic. D.C. residents of differing races, sexes, and levels socio-economic status have all been affected. Men having sex with men is the leading mode of transmission however; heterosexual transmission and injection drug use are not too far behind in numbers.
The D.C. HIV Prevention Community Planning Group (HPCPG), along with the Department of Health’s HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, STD, and TB Administration (HAHSTA), is looking for people who are interested in finding a solution to the local HIV epidemic. HPCPG is looking for new members to sit on the committee to help guide the city’s approach to HIV/AIDs detection and prevention.
One of your readers might be the perfect person to fulfill this role. We would love your help in spreading the word about this important issue in our community.
HPCPG members serve two year terms. The HPCPG is currently recruiting new members from all backgrounds, and welcomes unique and differing perspectives on the issue, as we work together to find a solution.
Applications for the group are due on December 2nd; therefore it is best to get the word out sooner rather than later. For more information on HPCPG and the possibility of joining the HPCPG team, please see the Fact Sheet at the bottom of this email.
The District of Columbia HIV Prevention Community Planning Group (HPCPG) guides HIV prevention in the District, along with the DC Department of Health’s HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, STD and TB Administration (HAHSTA). Members of the HPGCP are from local communities and/or HIV/AIDS prevention specialists and reflect the District’s diverse population.
The HPCPG is responsible for deciding which populations are in greatest need of HIV prevention services, as well as deciding what the best ways to meet those needs are. HAHSTA, in turn, is responsible for funding programs and services that match the HPCPG’s decisions.
In 1994, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) asked all states and several cities with high numbers of AIDS cases to take part in a new effort to form planning partnerships for HIV prevention programs. Each CDC funded health department created a community-wide planning process for HIV prevention in order to benefit from the involvement of their communities in developing complete HIV prevention plans.
The HIV Prevention Plan
Along with the HPCPG’s recommendations, the HIV Prevention Plan contains information on HIV Prevention in the District of Columbia, including, a description of the planning process, a summary of the HIV prevention needs of various behavioral risk populations, and prioritized behavioral risk populations
There are three principal uses for the HIV prevention Plan:
· The DC Department of Health makes funding decisions based on priorities set in the Plan.
· HIV Prevention providers look to the Plan for help developing strong HIV prevention programs.
· Current and future HPCPG members use the Plan as the basis for continuing HIV prevention planning.
Diversity in community representation
The HPGCP is comprised of a diverse group of community members whose demographics and skills represent the epidemic. The categories represented include:
· Ethnic/Racial Background
· Sexual Orientation
· Injection Drug Use History or Work with Injection Drug Users
· HIV Serostatus
· Technical Skills (behavioral science, research, epidemiology, etc.)
· Community Based Organization Representation
How to become involved
There are two ways to participate in the HPGCP: Join the HPCPG or come to meetings. The membership application can be downloaded HERE
Even if you do not join, you are always welcome at any of our meetings.
The HPCPG meets monthly on the second Thursday of the month from 5:30-8:00 PM at Department of Health facilities. Meeting dates and times are posted on the HPCPG website.