HIV News & Views, February 3, 2011
February 3, 2011
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Brooke Davidoff Brooke Davidoff: The Day I Disclosed to My Co-Workers
When Brooke was invited to speak at a local panel for World AIDS Day, she decided to disclose to her co-workers beforehand. "An all-company email was sent out inviting co-workers to come out to World AIDS Day and watch me speak. I held my breath and waited to hear people's reactions around the office. Nothing." In this blog entry, Brooke talks about her first HIV community speaking engagement and how her support group lit up her holidays.

Dr. Bob Dr. Bob: "Happy" Anniversary, HIV. Now It's Time for You to Go!
Twenty years after HIV "found" Bob Frascino, M.D., he's more than ready to say adios to the virus now that cure research is heating up. In part one of a three-part series focusing on progress toward a cure, Dr. Bob recounts his own roller-coaster journey with the virus that calls his body home -- for now.

Rae Lewis-Thornton Rae Lewis-Thornton: HIV/AIDS Can Take My CD4 Cells, But It Can't Take My Love of Books
Growing up in a broken home, abused by her mother's husband, Rae Lewis-Thornton would often escape to her bedroom and find comfort in reading books. "Reading is the one thing that the pain of my life could never take away from me. [...] Even today, living with AIDS, books continue to be the safest place for me," Rae writes in this blog entry, in which she announces the launch of her Twitter Book Club.

Love to read as much as Rae? See her first pick and join her Twitter Book Club!

Join the Conversation

Graham (From Little Rock, Ark.) on "The Rising HIV Rates Among Young Women and Girls of Color: What's Going On? Part One"

"My heart breaks for all the young women who only know this type of 'love.' The only type of love they really need is to love themselves and protect their bodies and hearts at the same time. If he REALLY loves you, he'll strap up, be faithful and get tested! Nothing is better than a woman's peace of mind."

Read the rest of Graham's comment and join the discussion on this article!


Mark S. King AIDS Activism 101: Steps to End the ADAP Crisis
"Activists held an 'emergency summit' this weekend to address the growing AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) crisis, and I'm taking you there," Mark S. King says. "In this video episode of My Fabulous Disease, you'll learn about the panic over ADAP, and exactly what you can do to prevent thousands of AIDS patients from losing access to lifesaving medications."

Todd Heywood HIV Criminalization Case Offers a Shocking Reminder of Ignorance in the U.S.
"No one is saying that [HIV-positive people] don't have an ethical obligation to disclose," writes journalist Todd Heywood. "The real question here is ... why are Americans of any sexual orientation abdicating their personal health and safety to another person's willingness or ability to disclose?" In a blog for The Bilerico Project, Heywood discusses how the immense societal ignorance around HIV transmission is "literally killing" gay men.

 Drug Company Deal May Be Bellwether for Getting New HIV Meds More Quickly to Poor Countries
Tibotec Pharmaceuticals announced it had granted multiple licenses to generic drug manufacturers for the NNRTI rilpivirine (TMC278), which is still in development. If the drug ultimately wins U.S. approval, this agreement means that, right off the bat, rilpivirine's cost in much of Africa, Asia and other resource-poor areas may be just a fraction of its price in wealthy nations.

 U.S. National HIV/AIDS Strategy Tiptoes Forward
"The implementation of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy moved a tiny step forward [last week] when federal agencies presented oral summaries of how they plan to carry out the strategy -- the first of its kind in the nation," writes Julie Turkewitz of Housing Works. "Problem is, several agencies that will play crucial roles in making the strategy a success did not present plans."

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Connect With Others

Newly Diagnosed in the U.S. Military, and Desperately Alone
(A recent post from the "I Just Tested Positive" board)

"I just found out I tested positive for HIV. I'm in the military and I'm confused. I don't know what to do. Where to start? What should I do? Who do I tell? It's killing me inside. I have nobody to talk to."

 -- element

Click here to join this discussion, or to start your own!

To do this, you'll need to register with's bulletin boards if you're a new user. Registration is quick and anonymous (all you need is an e-mail address) -- click here to get started!


Nelson Vergel Exercise Basics With Mark S. King and HIV Health Expert Nelson Vergel
Mark S. King's latest video blog finds him and HIV exercise/nutrition expert Nelson Vergel at the gym, where Nelson gives Mark a lesson on aerobic activity and weightlifting. "With issues like bone density more vital for people with HIV, weight training makes sense," Mark notes. Watch the two go through some basic exercises that can help anybody who wants to keep fit and counter some of the effects of aging with HIV.

Maria T. Mejia Maria T. Mejia: HIV/AIDS, Neuropathy, Painkillers (My Personal Hell)
"Why did this doc put me on a medication that seems like heroin but in pills?" asks blogger Maria T. Mejia. She's talking about oxycodone (best known by the brand name Oxycontin), which her doctor prescribed to help her deal with the pain from neuropathy. In this blog entry, Maria candidly discusses the eight-year personal hell that followed -- and how she finally beat the addiction she developed to oxycodone.

More Headlines on HIV Treatment and Health Issues:


 CDC Issues Interim Guidance on Use of HIV Meds to Prevent HIV
If you're gonna prescribe it, be really careful about it: That's basically what the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is telling doctors when it comes to "pre-exposure prophylaxis" (PrEP), the use of HIV meds to help prevent infection in HIV-negative people. The CDC promises more formal guidelines in several months; in the meantime, these interim guidelines include a lot of "ifs" and "buts" on the use of PrEP.

Paul Sax, M.D. Early Thoughts on U.S.'s "Interim" HIV PrEP Guidelines: Paul Sax, M.D.
Trying to make sense of the new "interim guidance" on HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention? Let HIV physician Paul Sax, M.D., lend a hand. In this article, Sax briefly walks through some of the key points of the interim guidelines, including the recommendation that PrEP only be used by high-risk men who have sex with men.

Activist Central

 Feb. 16: Is PrEP Prevention Justice? Join HIV PJA for Webinar on New Prevention Technology

 Urgent Action Required to Fight Unscientific, Stigmatizing Nebraska Bill That Will Criminalize Body Fluid Assault on Public Safety Officers

 Feb. 10: HIV, Health Care Reform, Prevention: How to Make It All Work!

 Register for AIDSWatch 2011 in Washington, D.C., February 16-18