Minnesota to Launch HIV Education Programs for Young MSM In response to a 17-year high in new HIV cases in 2009, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has announced a plan to create more HIV testing and education programs aimed at men who have sex with men (MSM) ages 15 to 24, reports minnpost.com.
USAID Grants $5 Million to Kenyan HIV Program and Indiana University
The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) granted $5 million to a partnership between the Indiana University School of Medicine and a medical school and hospital in Kenya to bolster access to HIV treatment in the sub-Saharan African country, the Chicago Tribune reports.
Bill Gates Talks HIV Prevention, Vaccines in 2010 Annual Letter Writing as the co-founder of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Bill Gates discussed HIV/AIDS in his annual letter. The Microsoft billionaire-turned-philanthropist stressed the importance of scaling up prevention efforts such as male circumcision, ensuring access to care in developing countries and supporting vaccine research.
New HIV Diagnoses Reach 17-Year High in Minnesota The number of new HIV diagnoses in Minnesota increased from 326 in 2008 to 368 in 2009—the state’s highest number in 17 years—according to state health officials and reported by The Associated Press.
New Yorkers’ Life Expectancy Highest in City’s History New Yorkers are now living longer than ever, according to new data released by city health officials as reported by the New York Daily News. City health commissioner Thomas Farley attributed New Yorkers’ longevity to better lifestyle habits.
Abbot Submits Early Detection HIV Test for FDA Approval Abbott Laboratories has submitted a Premarket Approval application for its Architect HIV Ag/Ab Combo assay to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for expedited review. The assay simultaneously tests for HIV antigens (proteins produced by the virus) as well as antibodies (proteins produced by the body).
South Dakota: HIV Incidence Reaches Five-Year Low New HIV infections in South Dakota have reached their lowest point in five years, according to South Dakota’s health department and reported on by the Argus Leader. There were 21 new cases in 2009, down from 34 the previous year.
Scottish HIV Groups: Proof of HIV Transmission Needed for Legal Prosecution After Mark Devereaux was convicted of having unprotected sex with four women without disclosing his HIV-positive status, HIV groups in Scotland said there should be the highest standard of proof before prosecution of reckless transmission of the virus, BBC News reports. Out of the four women Devereaux had sex with, one tested positive for HIV.
Study: High-Risk Populations Might Not Accept an HIV Vaccine If an HIV vaccine were to become widely available, many high-risk populations would still have difficulty accepting it, according to researchers at the University of California in Los Angeles (UCLA). Their findings are published in the December/January issue of Health Services Research, a peer-reviewed medical journal.
AIDS Activists React to Press Coverage of Online HIV Hoax
HIV activists and media experts are criticizing the coverage of an online hoax in which an allegedly HIV-positive woman claimed in a video to have intentionally transmitted the virus to 500 people, The Michigan Messenger reports. The woman, Jackie Braxton of Detroit, is actually HIV negative and was not charged for the hoax.
HIV-Positive Pilot Files Damages Suit for Status Disclosure San Francisco pilot Stanmore Cooper is suing the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the Social Security Administration (SSA), the U.S. Department of Transportation and other federal agencies for freely sharing information about his HIV status, claiming a violation of the Privacy Act, law.com reports.
New York State AIDS Housing Bill Passes Assembly A bill that would reduce housing cost for more than 11,000 HIV-positive New Yorkers living in government-subsidized housing passed the State Assembly by a vote of 82 to 54, timesunion.com reports.
China Launches Weekly HIV Radio Show One of China’s leading state-run radio networks is launching a nationwide, AIDS-focused program featuring HIV-positive hosts, Xinhua News Agency reports.
Uganda Lawmaker Defends Antigay Bill
Ugandan lawmaker David Bahati, who proposed a controversial bill in September that would make acts of homosexuality punishable by life imprisonment or even death, said January 8 that he will refuse any request to withdraw the legislation, The New York Times reports.
Pennsylvania Bar Offers Free Drinks to People Who Get Tested for HIV Working in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Health and Community Care Management, a nonprofit health care organization, Lucille’s Bar in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, offered free drinks on January 6 to people who get an HIV test, WJAC Johnstown reports. When people got their results, they received a $25 gift certificate.
Division of NYC’s Housing Works Merges With AIDS Treatment Data Network New York City AIDS service organization Housing Works’ announced a merger between its new Access to Care department and AIDS Treatment Data Network (ATDN), a treatment, research, advocacy and information clearinghouse. The alliance will allow both groups to better serve people living with HIV and hepatitis C while pushing for expanded access to care for both groups.
Adoption Agency Helps HIV-Positive Orphans Find Homes Illinois-based Adoption-Link Inc. has found adoptive families for about 60 HIV-positive children through its Chances by Choice program, the Chicago Tribune reports. The organization works with an orphanage outside Port-au-Prince, Haiti, where many of the children are living with HIV.
January 06, 2010
Safe Injection Pamphlet for New York City Drug Users Raises Controversy
The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene created its “Take Charge, Take Care: 10 Tips for Safer Use” harm reduction pamphlet for injection drug users in 2007, but the brochure has come under fire recently, with critics claiming it promotes illicit activity, CNN reports.
Study: Circumcision Lowers HIV and Bacterial Infection Risks
Circumcision not only reduces the risk of HIV transmission in men, but also drastically changes the bacteria on the penis, reducing the risk of HIV and bacterial infection transmission to female partners, suggests a study published in PloS ONE and reported on by United Press International.
Study: HIV-Positive Postmenopausal Women Are Vulnerable to Bone Fractures Postmenopausal women living with HIV are at risk for future bone fractures because of a high prevalence of low bone mineral density and high bone turnover, according to a new study reported on by Asian News International. The study will be published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
January 05, 2010
HIV Experts: Transgender Identity Is a Medical Condition, Not a Mental Illness
Transgender identity should be classified as a medical condition and not a mental illness, according to HIV experts as reported by Pink News. The issue was raised at the second International Experts’ Meeting on HIV Prevention for MSM, WSW [men who have sex with men, and women who have sex with women] and Transgenders in Amsterdam last November.
Anti-HIV Molecule Might Block Transmission U.S. investigators have found a molecule called surfen that can block HIV transmission, Voice of America News reports. The molecule, first described in 1939, is an anti-inflammatory and antibacterial agent that can bond to both HIV and white blood cells.
January 04, 2010
Man Files $30 Million Negligence Lawsuit After Contracting HIV 34-year-old Percy Whiteman of Toronto is filing a $30 million lawsuit against his HIV-positive ex-wife, Thai-born Suwalee Iamkhong, along with the Canada Border Services Agency, Immigration Canada and the Zanzibar Tavern—where she worked as a stripper—for negligence, claiming that failure to test her when she arrived in Canada in 1995 led to his contracting the virus, Canoe.com reports.