June 16, 2017 (PHOENIX): Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS is pleased to announce it is one of 30 grantees in the United States to receive a 5-year, 1.7 million dollar grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to enhance HIV prevention and outreach services in Arizona. In 2016, Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS performed over 5,000 free Rapid HIV and 3,000 STI tests for the Phoenix community. Thanks to the generous $1.7 million federal grant funding, Southwest Center will now be able to increase the accessibility of their free and low-cost HIV and STI tests to an even larger population of Arizonans whose lives have been touched by HIV.
“Over 17,000 men and women are living with diagnosed HIV in Arizona. Many more live without knowledge of the disease,” says Gary Egan, Interim CEO of the Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS. “This grant will be instrumental in helping us and our community partners improve the lives of those 17,000 individuals and others who are at risk for HIV.”
Through a collaborative partnership between one-n-ten and Southern Arizona AIDS Foundation, the grant funds will be used to provide comprehensive, high-impact HIV prevention services to young, Hispanic men who have sex with men between the ages of 13 and 29. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Hispanic/Latino community is disproportionately affected by HIV. In 2014 alone, Hispanics/Latinos accounted for nearly a quarter of new HIV diagnoses in the United States, despite representing only 17% of the total U.S. population.
Not only will the funding be used to increase accessibility to HIV and STD testing among those at highest risk for infection, it will aim to re-engage previously diagnosed individuals who are now out-of-care, connect and retain diagnosed individuals to critical medical care and support services, and ensure that individuals who are at high risk for infection have access to critical prevention and support, including Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP). Additionally, project materials and services are being developed to meet the needs of Spanish-speaking individuals.
Founded in 1990, Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS is located inside the Parsons Center for Health and Wellness, conveniently located just off the light rail, and provides prevention, education and outreach services to 30,000 Maricopa County citizens each year living with HIV/AIDS or at-risk for becoming infected.
The impact of the generous CDC funding will be felt throughout the Phoenix community as it supports Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS reduce the spread of new infections, increase access to care, and promote overall health equity.
To learn more check out SWHIV.org!
About Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS
Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS, a medical and support center based in Phoenix, Arizona, for people living with or at risk for contracting HIV/AIDS. Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS is the largest clinical, education, behavioral health, prevention and nutrition support center dedicated to fighting HIV and AIDS in the Southwestern United States. A 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization, Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS (formerly Body Positive) was founded in 1990 by Kirk Baxter. The Center’s vision, “leading the fight against HIV and AIDS” is carried out through our mission of reducing infection, improving quality of life and contributing to worldwide research. Today, hundreds of thousands of people around the world are taking HIV and AIDS-fighting drugs that earned Federal Drug Administration approval, thanks in part to the Center’s clinical trials and biomedical research program.