California HIV/AIDS Prevention Programs to Focus on Training HIV-Positive People to Prevent Spreading Virus
September 29, 2003
California's HIV/AIDS prevention efforts, which in the past have focused on curbing high-risk behavior, are being "revamped" to train HIV-positive people not to spread the virus, the Los Angeles Times reports. The "new tactic" in HIV/AIDS prevention "is set for substantially expanded use in California and the rest of the country in the next several months," according to the Times (Costello, Los Angeles Times, 9/29). The CDC in April announced a new HIV/AIDS prevention strategy that will shift funding distribution away from community groups that provide education aimed at reducing unsafe sexual and drug-use behaviors in people who have not contracted HIV. According to the strategy, the government will invest most heavily in initiatives that focus on identifying people who are already HIV-positive, which could jeopardize approximately $90 million in annual federal funding for community groups. The CDC has said that the current emphasis on community outreach prevention programs has proven ineffective, citing annual increases in the number of new HIV cases nationwide (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 8/18). In a "surprising step," California's Office of AIDS last year shifted up to 25% of its prevention funding to "prevention for positives" programs, the Times reports. The new prevention strategies will likely benefit programs that include "one-on-one" counseling with HIV-positive patients and their sex partners; routine testing inside and outside medical settings, including use of the rapid HIV test; mental health, drug abuse and "self-esteem" therapy; and efforts to prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission, according to the Times.
This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.