PrEP Open House

NCATEC will be hosting “PrEP Open House: What Doctors Need to Know; What Patients Need to Ask” on Friday June 29 from 2pm to 3:30pm in the first floor auditorium of the Bioinformatics Building (130 Mason Farm Road) on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill.  Public parking is available across the street.

This training will address clinical PrEP basics for those interested in prescribing this one-pill-a-day regimen for the prevention of HIV.  The presentation will also cover questions that consumers would want to ask themselves about their readiness to take PrEP and whether or not PrEP is right for them.  The training center will review its online PrEP resources for providers and consumers and review PrEP materials available in English and Spanish.

Please register early as we expect a strong interest in this training.

UNC CFAR Spring 2017 Networking Event

networking1

Congressman David Price

On May 8, 2017, the UNC CFAR Social and Behavioral Sciences Research Core hosted the Spring 2017 Networking Event. The theme of this month’s event was “HIV Research that Reaches Policymakers: Part I with Congressman David Price D-NC-04”.

David Price represents North Carolina’s Fourth District – a rapidly growing, research-and-education-focused district that includes parts of Orange, Durham, and Wake counties. He received his undergraduate degree at UNC-Chapel Hill and went to Yale University to earn a Bachelor of Divinity and Ph.D. in Political Science. Before he began serving in Congress in 1987, Price was a Professor of Political Science and Public Policy at Duke University. He is the author of four books on Congress and the American political system. Price currently serves on the House Appropriations Committee and is the ranking member of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Subcommittee. He is also a member of the Appropriations subcommittees covering homeland security, State Department, and foreign operations funding.

Congressman Price addresses attendees at the Networking Event

Congressman Price addresses attendees at the Networking Event

Congressman Price shared his perspective on how researchers can best focus their outreach efforts to inform policy makers about their research findings and shared personal examples of how he used research to inform policy.  He also shared the importance of having a broad viewpoint on health issues and working as a coalition to advocate for funding.

Following the talk, Dr. Ronald Strauss, Administrative Core Consultant for the UNC CFAR, moderated a question & answer session with Congressman Price and attendees. Attendees posed questions around the future of HIV research and prevention, with a specific focus on PrEP and HIV in the South. Congressman Price emphasized the importance of community partnerships and well-developed grassroots outreach efforts. Price discussed the value of seeking funding through the ACA to promote research and further inquiry in the field of health maintenance, diagnosis and wellness. A strong emphasis was placed on developing positive working relationships with community health centers, and Price encouraged attendees to think strategically about how we support the work of those combatting health challenges outside of the HIV/AIDS field. Congressman Price articulated that the most lasting impact is made when researchers work cooperatively to address health disparities. He encouraged attendees to connect with national advocacy groups like the Non-Defense Discretionary (NDD) United, an alliance of stakeholders from across the non-defense sectors, to call for a balanced approach to deficit reduction.

Stay tuned for Part 2 of this event with Congressman Price in the fall!

SYNChronicity 2017: The National Conference for HIV, HCV, and LGBT Health

SYNChronicity (or SYNC 2017) is HealthHIV’s national conference addressing HIV and HCV disease prevention, care and treatment. With the National Coalition for LGBT Health co-hosting SYNC 2017, the agenda is expanded to include LGBT health. The conference is titled SYNChronicity because the approach is to SYNC various audiences with a variety of topics with the intended outcome of advancing HIV, HCV and LGBT health.

Additionally, new track and institutes have been added to the 2017 Sync Agenda, including the Black Women’s Health Track and PrEP Preamble.

PrEP Preamble:
SYNCing CROI Data with PrEP Implementation
Sunday, April 23, 2017, 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM

HealthHIV is hosting the PrEP Preamble: SYNCing CROI Data with PrEP Implementation on Sunday, April 23 from 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

SYNC 2017 registration is not required to attend this event; all are invited to attend, including:
• Prescribing Providers (NP, PA, DO, MD);
• PrEP Advocates;
• Potential or Current PrEP Consumers;
• Health Department Staff; and
• Health Center Personnel

Please visit the conference website for more information. Click here to register. 

Blog: ID Clinic Director Claire Farel, MD, MPH, Answers Most Common Patient Questions

Claire Farel, MD, MPH, medical director of the UNC Infectious Diseases Clinic.

Claire Farel, MD, MPH, medical director of the UNC Infectious Diseases Clinic.

Claire Farel, MD, MPH, is an assistant professor of medicine in the UNC School of Medicine and medical director of the UNC Infectious Diseases Clinic. In answering the most common questions she is asked as a clinician, Dr. Farel illustrates the vast prevention and treatment services available at the clinic, and how they can be accessed.

I love it when patients ask questions. Being able to partner with patients in their care keeps all of us in the UNC Infectious Diseases (ID) Clinic going. Asking questions shows that patients and their families are engaged in what all of us find most important: a healthier life, an understanding of illness and treatment, reliable information to pass along to others, support during stressful times, options for prevention of infection, maybe even a lasting contribution to science.

There are some questions I get more than others. The following are some of the perennial favorites:

“My significant other has HIV. What can I do to keep from getting it?”
We love to get the word out about HIV prevention resources. If your loved one is on HIV medications already and doing well with an “undetectable” amount of virus on blood tests, their risk of passing HIV on to anyone else is greatly reduced by somewhere between 92-100 percent. We call this “treatment as prevention,” but there are other ways to use HIV medications to keep from getting the virus. You can take a pill every day to prevent HIV before an exposure, known as pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP. Using PrEP consistently creates a “shield” in your body against possible infection, dropping the risk of acquiring HIV by at least 90 percent. In an emergency situation (for example, if a condom breaks during sex or in cases of sexual assault), you can take a combination of medications called post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) to prevent infection after an exposure. There’s a fixed window of time for PEP medications to have a benefit, however – so it’s important to start those emergency medications within three days of the exposure. Our emergency department has expertise in providing this care and our clinic team can assist in accessing preventative medicine if needed.

We are happy to see folks who are interested in HIV prevention in our clinic and can offer lots of resources to make taking preventative medicine manageable and affordable – as well as advice on protecting yourself in other ways.

“How can I arrange to be seen in your clinic?”
We have special programs for HIV-positive patients that allow self-referral – just give us a call (information is included below) to arrange an appointment. We require that most other patients get a referral from a medical provider (such as a primary care provider or another specialist). Having your medical records and the initial workup for your problem allows us to provide a focused, expert consultation. We advise that anyone at risk gets testing for HIV and hepatitis C as recommended by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), either through regular healthcare provider, free testing events, or local health departments. We take referrals from all of these sources and provide hepatitis C treatment through our clinic if you have a new or longstanding diagnosis.

Our contact information is below, or many practices can send referrals electronically.

UNC Infectious Diseases Clinic
101 Manning Drive, 1st floor Memorial Hospital
Chapel Hill, NC 27599
Phone: 984-974-7198
Fax: 984-974-4587
http://www.med.unc.edu/infdis/clinical-care/infectious-diseases-clinic

Our mission is to provide excellent clinical care and education for all of our patients, whatever their concern, and to offer them every advance and advantage in our field to keep them healthy. Keep asking questions!

For more information and commonly asked questions, please visit the Institute for Global Health and Infectious Diseases Blog!

PrEParing for the Future: An Update on HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis

Speaker: Christopher Hurt, MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine

Division of Infectious Diseases
UNC School of Medicine

Christopher B. Hurt, MD, is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Institute for Global Health and Infectious Diseases at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC). Over the past several years, Dr. Hurt has worked extensively on issues related to the expansion of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) services in North Carolina. He established the UNC Infectious Diseases Clinic’s PrEP program in 2014 and coordinates PrEP-related education and outreach efforts of the North Carolina AIDS Training and Education Center (NCATEC), housed at UNC. Dr. Hurt also serves as the site principal investigator for HIV Prevention Trials Network (HPTN) Study 083, the first study to compare oral PrEP to a long-acting, injectable medication (the integrase inhibitor, cabotegravir) for HIV prevention in at-risk men who have sex with men and transgender women. 

Special Note: This Friday Morning Conference will be presented as a North Carolina AIDS Training and Education Center (NCATEC) event and advanced registration is requested. Registration is free and simple and involves filling out an online Participant Information Form, the brief documentation required by HRSA (Health Resources and Services Administration). For questions about registration or general questions about the NCATEC, please contact Megan Katsaounis mkats@med.unc.edu.

Friday Morning ID/CFAR Conference: HIV and STD Epidemiology in North Carolina

October 7, 2016
8:30 – 9:30 a.m.
1131 Bioinformatics
UNC Campus (directions)

Heidi Swygard, MD, MPH
Associate Professor of Medicine
Division of Infectious Diseases
UNC School of Medicine

Please click here to fill out a quick registration form.

Heidi Swygard, MD, MPH, is an Associate Professor of Medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases at UNC’s School of Medicine. She specializes in HIV and sexually transmitted diseases (STD) care and prevention; HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP); and linkage to and retention in care. She sees people living with HIV and people at high risk for becoming infected, including the transgender population, two days a week off campus.

Dr. Swygard is a medical epidemiologist and consultant for special projects with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services HIV/STD care branch. She is medical director of UNC’s annual HIV conference, which draws 400 providers from across the state. Dr. Swygard recently served as the medical director for the inaugural Injecting Drug User Health summit, which was hosted by the Mountain Area Health Education Center (AHEC) in Asheville.