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September 30, 2009
UNAIDS: HIV Testing More Than Doubles Worldwide in 2008
HIV testing more than doubled in dozens of countries last year, leading to an upswing in HIV reporting and an increase in people getting treated, according to UNAIDS as reported by The New York Times.
Study: Cancer Types Vary Among HIV-Positive People
The types of cancers in HIV-positive patients have shifted since antiretroviral therapies were introduced in the mid-’90s, according to researchers at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center as reported by United Press International.
Janet Jackson Helps Raise $1.1 million at amfAR Charity Dinner
Pop superstar Janet Jackson hosted an auction at an amfAR, the Foundation for AIDS Research, charity dinner, which raised $1.1 million for the organization, The Associated Press reports. Guests paid between $2,200 and $11,500 apiece to attend.
September 29, 2009
Ryan White Deadline Extended 30 Days
On September 25, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a measure to extend funding for the Ryan White CARE Act for 30 days, which would move its reauthorization deadline from September 30 to the end of October, the Southern Voice reports.
HIV-Positive Maryland Teacher Settles Bias Suit
Chauncey Stevenson, a teacher fired from a private school for being HIV positive, has settled his lawsuit against Chesapeake Academy in Ann Arundel County, Maryland, reports The Baltimore Sun
Study: HIV Transmitted Among Heterosexuals Slower Than Among MSM
HIV transmission among heterosexual men and women is slower than among men who have sex with men (MSM), according to a study published in PLoS Pathogens as reported by United Press International. 
September 28, 2009
National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day Recognized September 27
September 27 marked the second-annual National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, aimed at refocusing attention on the epidemic among men who have sex with men (MSM) while remembering those who have died from AIDS-related illness. 
New HIV Education Initiative Targets Black Colleges and Universities
During the 39th Annual Congressional Black Caucus Foundation Legislative Conference on September 25, the National Minority AIDS Council announced details of its new Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) HIV/AIDS Peer Education Initiative, which will encourage students to get more involved in HIV/AIDS prevention and education efforts on campus and in surrounding communities.
Chicago AIDS Charity Under Investigation for Suspicious Spending
Four years ago, the nonprofit organization Let’s Talk, Let’s Test Foundation (LTLT) convinced Illinois legislators to allocate $3 million per year to the group so it could fight HIV/AIDS in African-American communities; it later received $1.2 million through the state’s African American HIV/AIDS Response Fund. However, the Chicago Sun-Times reports, health officials are now questioning $523,545 that LTLT spent on nonessentials such as football seats and five-figure staff bonuses.  
September 25, 2009
Successful HIV Vaccine Trial Poses New Questions for Researchers
While a successful trial of the RV 144 HIV vaccine is a major step forward in HIV/AIDS research, experts say that the vaccine’s efficacy provides few answers but raises many questions, aidsmap.com reports. In a Thailand-based trial—the largest ever staged for an HIV vaccine—RV 144 reduced the risk of HIV infection by more than 30 percent in participants.
POZ Columnist Shawn Decker to Receive Whitman-Walker Courage Award
POZ columnist and blogger Shawn Decker will receive the Whitman-Walker Clinic’s Courage Award at the October 3 opening ceremony of Washington, DC’s 23rd annual AIDS Walk, The Washington Post reports.
Actor Blair Underwood Helps Open Free HIV/AIDS Clinic in DC
The AIDS Healthcare Foundation Blair Underwood Healthcare Center, named after the Hollywood actor and AIDS activist, is open for free HIV/AIDS care in Washington, DC, The Washington Post reports. According to data released earlier this year, at least 3 percent of DC’s population is HIV positive.
September 24, 2009
Large-Scale HIV Vaccine Trial Shows Some Success
For the first time, an HIV vaccine trial has produced positive results: A new vaccine tested on more than 16,000 volunteers in Thailand reduces the risk of HIV infection by more than 30 percent, The New York Times reports. 
Arkansas ADAP, Ryan White Cut Services
The Arkansas AIDS drug assistance program (AR ADAP) and a Ryan White CARE program have slashed their annual income eligibility threshold to $21,660, leaving many positive people in the state scrambling for options to pay for expensive treatments, reports the Arkansas Times
AIDS Activists Urge G-20 Leaders to Fund HIV Treatment
On September 22, AIDS activists marched through downtown Pittsburgh and demanded that the international Group of Twenty Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, a.k.a. the G-20, and other political leaders stop using the global economic crisis as an excuse to reduce funding for HIV/AIDS treatment, The Associated Press reports. 
September 23, 2009
POZ Editor-in-Chief’s Memoir Now Available
POZ editor-in-chief Regan Hofmann’s memoir, I Have Something to Tell You, hit bookshelves September 22. In anticipation of the book’s release, she shared her story recently in the New York Post
HIV Activists to Reengage LGBT Community at Equality March in DC
One day before the National Equality March on October 11 in Washington, DC, HIV activists, speakers and performers—most of whom are HIV positive—will convene in front of the White House to redirect attention to HIV/AIDS in the LGBT community. The event will culminate with a candlelight vigil.
U.S. Closer to Lifting HIV Travel and Immigration Ban This Year
According to a memo by the U.S. Customs and Immigration Service (CIS), the HIV travel and immigration ban might be lifted this year, The Advocate reports. Current regulations state that noncitizens living with HIV cannot visit the United States unless they have a waiver, and that positive immigrants are denied entry. 
September 21, 2009
FDA Approves Abbott’s New HIV Test
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved Abbott Laboratories’ new HIV test, which can detect HIV types 1 and 2, The Associated Press reports. While type 2 is mostly found in West Africa, type 1 is comprised of various HIV subgroups found primarily in both the United States and West Africa.
Report: VA Has Addressed Endoscopic Safety Failures After HIV Mishap
Recent inspections of Veterans Affairs (VA) medical facilities show that the agency has responded to endoscopic procedure safety issues that have potentially exposed thousands of veterans to HIV and other blood-borne infections, The Associated Press reports.
South Africa’s Plan for Mandatory HIV Testing Raises Human Rights Concerns
Human rights advocates argue that making HIV testing mandatory in South Africa would breach patients’ human rights, the Daily Mail reports. Officials had proposed that everyone be tested for HIV automatically during a routine doctor’s visit.
September 18, 2009
HIV Camp Reschedules Summer Sessions Canceled After H1N1 Scare
One Heartland, a Milwaukee-based camp for children living with HIV/AIDS, will hold fall sessions for 88 campers whose July session in Minnesota was canceled after two volunteer staff members were diagnosed with the H1N1 virus (swine flu), the Chicago Tribune reports. 
U.S. Senator: Ryan White Bill to Be Reauthorized by September 30 Deadline
The federal Ryan White CARE Act is set to expire September 30 unless reauthorized by Congress, but U.S. Senator Tom Harkin (D–Iowa) said September 16 that the program—which provides care, treatment, education and support services for people living with HIV—will be reauthorized before the deadline, The Iowa Independent reports. 
Boise Man to Serve 20 to 30 Years in Prison for Failing to Disclose HIV Status
Kerry Thomas, a basketball player for Boise State University in the 1980s, has been sentenced to 20 to 30 years in prison for failing to disclose his HIV status to a sexual partner who allegedly did not contract the virus, the Idaho Statesman reports. He had previously served time for other HIV-related charges.
September 17, 2009
Iowa Man’s 25-Year HIV Exposure Sentence Reduced to 5-Year Probation
Nick Rhoades, an Iowa man sentenced May 8 to 25 years in prison for failing to disclose his HIV status to a male sexual partner, had his sentence reduced to five years of probation without jail time in a September 11 reconsideration hearing, The Iowa Independent reports. 
Arkansas Cuts Back on State HIV/AIDS Programs Due to Lack of Funding
More than 200 people living with HIV/AIDS in Arkansas have received letters informing them that starting next year their HIV medications will not be paid for through state assistance programs, 4029tv.com reports.
Dallas City Council Rejects HIV/AIDS Funding Proposal
A bill to restore $250,000 in cuts from Dallas’s HIV/AIDS services budget was voted down 9–6 by the Dallas City Council, the Dallas Voice reports. 
September 16, 2009
Malawi: To Fight AIDS, Official Calls for Gay Rights
In the first public government comment on homosexuality in Malawi, a senior official said that the conservative southeast African country must make efforts to recognize gay rights if it is to properly address HIV/AIDS, Reuters reports. 
FDA Approves H1N1 Vaccine
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved vaccines from four pharmaceutical companies for the H1N1 virus (swine flu), Reuters reports. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said on September 15 that all Americans who want a vaccine will get one.
UCSC Professor Receives $3.5M Grant for AIDS Research
Phillip Berman, PhD, from the University of California at Santa Cruz received a $3.5 million five-year grant from the National Institutes of Health to pursue new research that might lead to an HIV vaccine, KGO Newstalk in San Francisco reports. 
September 15, 2009
Positive SC Man Wins $10M After Insurer Denied Health Coverage
The South Carolina Supreme Court on September 14 upheld a verdict against Fortis Insurance Company for revoking a man’s health coverage after he tested HIV positive; it did so based on a nurse writing down the wrong year of his test, The Associated Press reports.
$33M From Economic Stimulus Bill Goes to Train Health Professionals
Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced September 14 that $33 million will go toward expanding health care training in the United States. 
Study: New Myriad Inc. HIV Drug Can Reduce Viral Load 50-fold in 2 Weeks
Myriad Pharmaceuticals Inc.’s experimental HIV drug, bevirimat dimeglumine, can reduce viral load by as much as 50-fold in two weeks in some patients, according to a new study reported by Bloomberg. Researchers presented their findings September 14 at the 49th Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) in San Francisco
September 14, 2009
Sir Elton John Denied Request to Adopt HIV-Positive Ukrainian Child
A Ukrainian official has denied Sir Elton John’s request to adopt a 14-month-old HIV-positive Ukrainian boy, saying the 62-year-old pop superstar is too old and is not married, The Associated Press reports.
National Latino AIDS Conference Kicks Off in NYC
The National Conference on Latinos and AIDS begins Monday, September 14, at the New York Academy of Medicine. This marks the first time the conference is being held in the Empire State.
Louisville, KY, AIDS Walk Fundraiser Comes Up Short; Local Services May Suffer
The Louisville, Kentucky, AIDS Walk drew $16,000 less than last year, which will likely result in funding cuts for local HIV/AIDS services in Jefferson County, WHAS 11 reports. Now in its 17th year, the annual event usually rakes in hundreds of thousands of dollars. Exact tallies for Sunday’s event were not yet reported.
September 11, 2009
Medicare Might Soon Cover HIV Testing
Medicare may pay for beneficiaries’ HIV tests under a draft government proposal, Reuters reports. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) said September 9 that there was suitable evidence that HIV screening is a necessary and appropriate preventative health measure.
WHO: Adolescent Deaths Much Higher in Poor Countries
Far more young people between the ages of 10 to 24 die in developing countries compared with wealthier ones as a result of infectious disease, violence and other causes, according to the World Health Organization as reported by MedPage Today. 
Fired HIV-Positive Virginia Man Wins Court Case Against TGI Friday’s
Alexandria, Virginia, Circuit Court Judge Nolan Dawkins has ruled in favor of James McCray, who said he was dismissed from his job at TGI Friday’s because he is HIV positive, the Washington Blade reports. 
September 10, 2009
FDA Panel Recommends Gardasil for Men, Cervarix for Women
A U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) panel recommended on September 9 that the agency approve the Cervarix human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine for women and that it expand the Gardasil HPV vaccine for use by men, the Los Angeles Times reports. 
ATAC Releases Pharmaceutical Company HIV/AIDS Report Card
On September 10, the AIDS Treatment Activists Coalition (ATAC) released a report card on the pharmaceutical industry that graded nine pharmaceutical companies on their drug development portfolio and plans, access to drugs, pricing, community relations and marketing practices around HIV, The New York Times reports.
Obama Releases Details of Health Plan
In a joint session of Congress on September 9, President Barack Obama denounced the “scare tactics” brought on by opponents of his health care reform plan, The New York Times reports.
September 09, 2009
New York May Better Regulate HIV, Hepatitis C Care for Prisoners
A pending bill might require the New York State Health Department to better monitor HIV and hepatitis C health care for prisoners living with the conditions in state correctional facilities, The Associated Press reports. 
Canadian Company Helps Strengthen Blood Safety, Donor Programs in Africa
A formal joint agreement between the Safe Blood for Africa Foundation (SBFA) and Canada-based Héma-Québec aims to provide better blood safety and donor programs in Africa to decrease the risk of transfusion-related transmission of HIV, hepatitis C and other blood-borne illnesses.
Michigan Ruling on HIV Disclosure Case Highlights Medical Privacy Issues
Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox’s decision to clear Lansing attorney Brigham Smith of any criminal wrongdoing in the public release of an arrested man’s HIV status has raised medical privacy concerns in the state, The Michigan Messenger reports. 
September 08, 2009
Controversial German HIV Prevention Ads Feature Adolf Hitler, Saddam Hussein
A German HIV/AIDS awareness advertisement depicting a woman having sex with Adolf Hitler is drawing controversy from AIDS advocates, who accuse Hamburg advertising agency Das Comitee of reinforcing stigma surrounding the virus, The Guardian reports. 
Computer Program Offers Instant PEP Advice for ER Workers in NY
Beginning September 9, emergency room doctors throughout New York state will have access to instant HIV post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) guidelines thanks to a computer application developed by doctors at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Manhattan, The New York Times reports. 
Study: 1 in 5 HIV-Positive Melbourne MSM Unaware of Status
One in five HIV-positive men who have sex with men (MSM) is unaware of his status, according to a study by Melbourne’s Burnet Institute of HIV and STI Research as reported by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 
September 04, 2009
N.Y. Court Upholds HIV-Related Patient Confidentiality in Misconduct Case
On August 25, the Supreme Court of the State of New York Appellate Division, First Department, ruled that a subpoena seeking medical and billing records of nine patients of an HIV specialist under inquiry based upon anonymous allegations of physician misconduct was in violation of the New York Public Health Law.
AIDS Denialist Film House of Numbers Opens in New York
Brent Leung’s House of Numbers, a movie about AIDS denialism, opens September 4 in New York City, and The New York Times offers a negative review in that day’s paper. 
Scientists Discover Antibodies That Halt HIV Disease Progression
Scientists from the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, San Diego, have been able to isolate two neutralizing antibodies that can prevent HIV from multiplying in the body and progressing to AIDS, the Los Angeles Times reports. This discovery, published in the journal Science, may prove beneficial in HIV vaccine development.
September 03, 2009
Angels in America Revived in New York in 2010
New York’s Signature Theater Company will stage the first New York revival of Tony Kushner’s Angels in America as part of its 2010-11 season dedicated to the playwright’s work, The New York Times reports. 
U.S. Researchers Find Link Between HIV Subtype D and Dementia
Researchers from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore believe that people living with HIV Subtype D have an increased risk of dementia compared with those with other subtypes of the virus, reports United Press International. Subtype D is rare in the United States and is more prominent in Eastern and Central Africa. 
Critics Lambaste Miss Universe “Condom Olympics”
On August 21, two days before the Miss Universe 2009 pageant, contestants participated in the Condom Olympics, an HIV/AIDS awareness event designed by Population Services International (PSI). But, as MyFox Northeast Pennsylvania reports, conservative groups are critical of the event, questioning its efficacy as an HIV education tool. 
September 02, 2009
Jay-Z Designs Charity T-Shirt to Honor Arthur Ashe
As part of his Rocawear clothing line, rap superstar Jay-Z has designed a T-shirt featuring late HIV-positive tennis great Arthur Ashe, to be sold for charity at the U.S. Open, The Associated Press (AP) reports. 
DC Council Member Marion Barry Proposes Mandatory HIV Testing for Inmates
DC Council member Marion Barry (D-Ward) has proposed a bill requiring mandatory HIV testing for all city inmates—including those convicted of a sex crime—upon jail admission, reports The Washington Post. The bill also mandates post-test counseling. 
San Jose’s Billy DeFrank LGBT Center Drops Paid Workers and Suspends HIV Testing
The Billy DeFrank LGBT Community Center in San Jose announced September 1 it is cutting all paid staff and is suspending HIV testing for a short time due to a lack of funding, the Mercury News reports. 
September 01, 2009
CDC: HIV Incidence Is 50 Times Higher Among MSM
Men who have sex with men (MSM) become HIV positive at a rate more than 50 times that of women or straight men, according to new statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and reported by RH Reality Check. 
Manchester Councilor Discloses His HIV Status
At the end of Manchester, England’s annual Pride celebrations, councilor Paul Fairweather—an openly gay LGBT advocate—revealed he was HIV positive to the thousands in attendance, BBC News reports. 
Florida: AIDS-Related Deaths Decrease in Men, but Less So Among Blacks
AIDS-related deaths in Florida have decreased in men among all racial and ethnic groups since 2006, according to a new report by the state health department covered in the Orlando Sentinel.
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