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YMSM Project Newsletter – June 2015

Advocates for Youth Newsletter

Feature: Revised Surveillance Case Definition for HIV Infection — United States, 2014:

Following extensive consultation and peer review, CDC and the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists have revised and combined the surveillance case definitions for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection into a single case definition for persons of all ages (i.e., adults and adolescents aged ≥13 years and children aged <13 years). The revisions were made to address multiple issues, the most important of which was the need to adapt to recent changes in diagnostic criteria. Laboratory criteria for defining a confirmed case now accommodate new multitest algorithms, including criteria for differentiating between HIV-1 and HIV-2 infection and for recognizing early HIV infection. A confirmed case can be classified in one of five HIV infection stages (0, 1, 2, 3, or unknown); early infection, recognized by a negative HIV test within 6 months of HIV diagnosis, is classified as stage 0, and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) is classified as stage 3. Criteria for stage 3 have been simplified by eliminating the need to differentiate between definitive and presumptive diagnoses of opportunistic illnesses. Clinical (nonlaboratory) criteria for defining a case for surveillance purposes have been made more practical by eliminating the requirement for information about laboratory tests. The surveillance case definition is intended primarily for monitoring the HIV infection burden and planning for prevention and care on a population level, not as a basis for clinical decisions for individual patients. CDC and the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists recommend that all states and territories conduct case surveillance of HIV infection using this revised surveillance case definition. For more information on this article, click here.

Reviewing the recent MMWR, the language Stage-3 is displayed alongside AIDS. To view the slide set click here.


Capacity Building and Professional Development

Bridging Ryan White Providers & FQHCs: Ryan White and FQHC Collaborative Agreement Opportunities: Bridging Ryan White Providers & FQHCs: Ryan White and FQHC Collaborative Agreement Opportunities – will focus on the Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) program requirements, pathways to becoming an FQHC and best practices for developing business partnerships or collaborative agreements between Ryan White providers and FQHCs. This session is the final of a three part webinar series that will provide detailed information for Ryan White providers and program administrators to learn more about opportunities to partner with an FQHC. Each session is a stand-alone presentation and discussion with experts from Feldesman, Tucker, Leifer, and Fidell. Reading resource recommendations will be offered to enhance learning in between the webinar sessions. Content from this webinar can guide Strategy 4 LEAs in navigating affordable HIV care for their young black and Latino men who have sex with men. To register for this webinar click here.

Envisioning the Future, Creating our Path: NACCHO Annual 2015. NACCHO hosts an annual conference that addresses the specific needs and concerns of local health officials. NACCHO’s conferences are learning and networking opportunities for local health officials and their public health partners from all geographic regions of the nation. Participants gather to share perspectives and engage in dialogue on common key public health practice issues. The NACCHO annual conference will take place July 7-9, 2015 in Kansas, MO. To find out more information and to register for this conference, click here.

Harm Reduction and Human Rights: Strategies on Expanding Harm Reduction Through Human Rights: Harm reduction services and syringe exchange are more than just a prevention strategy. Access to these vital services enables HIV testing, linkage to care and other critical health/social services, as well as affirming the human rights and dignity of people who use drugs.

This webinar examined how community harm reduction advocates, activists, policymakers and practitioners are reframing drug use with a human rights and structural lens, and as a public health issue, instead of a criminal issue. Panelists discussed and shared their perspective and strategies in how they are utilizing human rights as a way to expand harm reduction, while uplifting the rights of people who use drugs. The content in these slides may help Strategy 4 LEAs while working within their respective referrals networks, as well as assess the types of referrals that need to be made for young people in Strategy 4 cities. To download the slide sets, click here.

National Evidence-Based Programs Training of Trainers. ETR will be hosting a 4-day training of trainers September 15-18, 2015 in New Orleans, LA. This training will prepare individuals to effectively train educators on one of three evidence-based programs- Draw the Line/Respect the Line, Reducing the Risk, or Becoming a Responsible Teen. This certificate program is designed specifically for seasoned trainers. To learn more or register, click here.


HIV Prevention Service Utilization in the Los Angeles House and Ball Communities: Past Experiences and Recommendations for the Future; CDC MMWR, Vital Signs: HIV Infection, Testing and Risk Behaviors Among Youths – United States: Data shows that populations at increased risk from HIV infection include African-American young men who have sex with men (AAYMSM) and transgender persons. This article details a mixed-method study conducted in the House and Ball communities in Los Angeles to determine effective approaches to HIV prevention in this hard to reach population.

Researchers surveyed 263 participants during Ball events and interviewed 26 House leaders. The purpose was to gain a deeper understanding about social and demographic characteristics, sexual identity, experiences of racism, HIV and sexual transmitted infection (STI) behaviors, access to health services and connection to their internal and external community. Participants surveyed during events, completed a 30-45 minutes audio, computer-assisted self-interview. This article highlights a special population within the YMSM culture. Young people in Strategy 4 cities may have members of this population within their schools or receiving services at community based organizations. To read more about this study click here.

Population-Based Research with Sexual Minority Youth: The American Journal of Public Health and IMPACT Program released a special publication on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth. Many of the articles within this issue report results from the YRBS Pooling Project. To view the journal, click here.

Announcements and News

DCPS Transgender and Gender Non Conforming Policy Guidance: The DCPS Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Policy Guidance is intended to be a tool for schools, parents and students to effectively navigate existing laws, regulations and policies that support transgender or gender‐nonconforming DCPS students. It provides guidance to ensure that all students are treated equitably and with dignity at school. Resources include the following:

  • Direction to schools on meeting our federal/district obligations to ensure equitable treatment of transgender/gender-¬‐nonconforming students;
  • Insight for families, students, and school staff who may have questions; and
  • Templates, tools, and resources for administrators, school staff, families, and students.

This document was shared during the Stonewall National Symposium. The DPCS Transgender and Gender—nonconforming policy guidance gives a template of what an inclusive school policy can look like for young people. As the Strategy 4 LEAs continue to work in their priority schools to create safe and supportive environments, this also includes policies within the schools that address the needs of black and Latino YMSM. To read this document click here.



Advocates for Youth


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