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Institute of Human Virology Marks National Gay Men's HIV/AIDS Awareness Day on Wednesday, September 27 as HIV/AIDS Increases in Baltimore’s Youth

September 20, 2017

Carla Alexander, MD

The proportion of newly reported HIV diagnoses among Maryland youth has tripled over 20 years

The proportion of newly reported HIV diagnoses among Maryland youth has tripled over 20 years. The Institute of Human Virology (IHV) at the University of Maryland School of Medicine will host an event Wednesday, September 27 to raise awareness about the rise in HIV/AIDS among Maryland’s youth ages 13-24, particularly among young black men. Of the 252 youth HIV diagnoses in 2015, 82.5 percent were male and 17.5 percent were female in Maryland while 82.1 percent of these new diagnoses were African American.  The statistics are astounding considering the availability of prevention therapy.

“During our Care and Support Access study, we found that HIV infection is not only disproportionately affecting young black gay men, but we found that these young men face significant personal challenges as they attempt to remain on treatment for HIV. Being on treatment reduces the risk of new infections and poor health.” said Carla Alexander, MD, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Institute of Human Virology, University of Maryland School of Medicine.  “We co-founded the non-profit Baltimore Project to Save Lives to create a positive, safe place for Baltimore’s young men to congregate to learn about prevention and treatment options in addition to providing resources for homelessness and other socio-economic conditions that impact self-care.”

“These data inspire us to do more to ensure all those we serve at risk for HIV infection get engaged in our provider services, including PREP,” said Robert Redfield, MD, The Robert C. Gallo, MD Endowed Professorship in Translational Medicine, Co-founder, Associate Director, Director, Division of Clinical Care and Research, Institute of Human Virology, University of Maryland School of Medicine.  “Today’s event, and Dr. Alexander’s non-profit, Baltimore Project to Save Lives, are terrific initiatives needed to effectively reach the hardest hit minorities in our community.”

The event will honor public servants, elected officials, and community physicians who are fighting this illness.   The following events are hosted at G.A.Y. Lounge; 518 N Charles St; Baltimore 21201.

4-6 pm    Paint Party for young Same-Gender-Loving Men: "Be Authentically YOU!!"

6-7 pm    Awards Ceremony for HIV doctors, care providers and advocates

Honorees include:

  • Lynda Dee: Director, AIDS Action Baltimore
  • Ronald Johnson: Vice President of Policy and Advocacy, AIDS United
  • Michael Levin, MD: Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine, Institute of Human Virology, University of Maryland School of Medicine
  • Patrick Mutch, MPH: President and Chief Executive Officer, Chase Brexton Health Care
  • Frank Oldham Jr.: An openly gay, African American HIV-positive activist, who helped found National Gay Men's HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, along with successfully living with HIV since the early epidemic
  • Robert Redfield, MD: The Robert C. Gallo, MD Endowed Professorship in Translational Medicine; Co-Founder, Associate Director, Director of the Division of Clinical Care and Research, Institute of Human Virology; Associate Chair, Chairman's Office; Division Head, Infectious Diseases; Chief of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine; Vice Chair of Medicine for Clinical Affairs, Department of Medicine, University of Maryland School of Medicine

7-8 pm    Reception

About the Institute of Human Virology

Formed in 1996 as a partnership between the State of Maryland, the City of Baltimore, the University System of Maryland, and the University of Maryland Medical System, the IHV is an institute of the University of Maryland School of Medicine and is home to some of the most globally-recognized and world-renowned experts in all of virology. The IHV combines the disciplines of basic research, epidemiology, and clinical research in a concerted effort to speed the discovery of diagnostics and therapeutics for a wide variety of chronic and deadly viral and immune disorders - most notably, HIV the virus that causes AIDS. For more information, visit www.ihv.org and follow us on Twitter @IHVmaryland.

Contact

Institute of Human Virology
Nora Samaranayake
Chief Communications & Public Affairs Officer
(443) 823-0613 (phone)
(410) 706-1952 (fax)
nsamaranayake@ihv.umaryland.edu

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