Congratulations to Governor Cuomo on his historic efforts in 2015 to End the AIDS Epidemic in NYS. This progress makes me proud to be a New Yorker who is also living with AIDS. The Damien Centers will continue to work with the Governor and the Legislature in 2016 to increase our efforts in the upstate New York Capital Region to reduce new HIV infections and stop deaths from AIDS.
Below is an excerpt from the Governor’s recently released State of Opportunity, End of Year Report 2015 (pages 28-29). Full report is found at: https://www.governor.ny.gov/sites/governor.ny.gov/files/atoms/files/EOY_Report.pdf
Strengthening Our State’s Healthcare System
Ending the AIDS Epidemic in New York State: On World AIDS Day, Governor Cuomo announced $200 million in new funding towards HIV/AIDS efforts, supplementing the $2.5 billion the state currently directs towards HIV/AIDS. In 2014, the Governor announced a plan to end AIDS as an epidemic in New York State with the goal of decreasing new HIV infections to 750 per year by 2020 and achieving our first ever decrease in HIV prevalence.
Notable achievements include:
- No new cases of mother-to-child transmission in New York State over a twelve – month period –the first time since the outbreak of the AIDS epidemic in the state;
- Tripled pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) utilization since the Governor’s announcement in June 2014;
- The launch of the Medicaid Managed Care Program to promote patient linkage and retention in care. Approximately 6,000 HIV positive patients were identified through a match between New York State HIV Medicaid data and the New York State HIV/AIDS Registry;
- $1 million in funding to New York City clinics that provide diagnoses and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases. This funding will be used to employ a ‘One-Stop STD Clinic’ model, which provides immediate access to PrEP and anti-retrovirals for newly diagnosed HIV-positive persons;
- $3 million in funding toward the goal of linking up to 1,000 people from the populations at greatest risk for HIV/AIDS to PrEP;
- Initiated a PrEP Assistance Program and expanded targeted health care services to young men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender persons.
- Launched a program to identify all out of care HIV-infected state prison inmates.
- Approximately 200 inmates have been identified who will receive public health linkage services to connect to anti-retroviral treatment; and