Category Archives: HIV
Howard Brown Health Center (HBHC) has stood as a beacon for LGBTQ equality for 40 years, and our services only grow more vital in today’s changing healthcare landscape. To commemorate past accomplishments and unfold plans for the year ahead, HBHC will hold its Annual Meeting on Thursday, May 29, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. at the future home of the HBHC’s Brown Elephant Store in Lakeview at 3020 N. Lincoln Avenue.
Together with funders, community partners, and patients, HBHC’s newly appointed President and CEO David Ernesto Munar will trace the narrative of this remarkable community health center, which has provided compassionate and LGBTQ-affirming healthcare and wellness services to diverse patient populations since 1974.
“For 40 years, Howard Brown has led community-based efforts to improve the health and lives of sexual and gender minorities and our allies,” Munar said. “Since our founding in 1974, the modern gay liberation movement has made extraordinary gains we can all be proud of. But sadly, severe health disparities persist in our community as compared to the population at large. The next frontier of our struggle must seek full health and socio-economic justice for everyone, regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation.”
The event will take place at the future home of HBHC’s flagship Brown Elephant resale store, opening for business on July 1. This new store symbolizes the expansion of HBHC’s affordable and community centered mission, with proceeds from all Brown Elephant locations expanding access to essential healthcare services to all people, regardless of their ability to pay.
The Annual Meeting, free of charge, will start with light refreshments. The presentation will include the introduction of HBHC’s newly elected members of the Board of Directors. At the event, HBHC will launch a year of activities commemorating 40 years of service to the community. HBHC thanks AbbVie, Barefoot Wine, Jewell Events Catering, MillerCoors, and others for providing generous support to make the Annual Meeting possible.
Please stand proudly with HBHC on May 29. RSVP online here or by calling 773.572.5117. Space is limited.
Light our fight. Ignite our future.
Igniting our 30th year of service –
AIDS Foundation of Chicago
IGNITE Fantastic Rooftop party coming May 16th!
Open bar, delectable world fare and dancing. Guests will also enjoy live glass artistry, roof-top views of the sunset over the skyline, and chances to win Luxury Vacation Packages in our raffle.
Friday, May 16 – 6-9PM | Tickets: $185
Ignite Glass Studio – Map
401 North Armour Street
Chicago, Illinois 60642
Valet parking will be available upon arrival at 401 North Armour Street.
Howard Brown Health Center provides access to Pre- and Post- Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP and PEP) to reduce your chance of aquiring HIV. Preventing HIV is part of the full spectrum of primary care services offered at HBHC, and PrEP is offered as part of those services.
To limit the risk of HIV infection, HBHC offers PrEP and PEP to those most likely to be exposed to HIV and those who may have recently been exposed. PrEP is offered without judgment and our staff will work to help you access the medication without prohibitive costs.
Frequently asked questions:
What is PrEP?
Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) is a medication that can reduce your risk of aquiring HIV. If you take PrEP as directed, it can reduce the chance that HIV will be able to infect your body. A once-daily pill is available for patients seeking PrEP.
Who can take PrEP?
PrEP can be taken by an HIV-negative person (in consultation with their heathcare provider) who wants to reduce their chance of acquiring HIV. PrEP is available through prescription only.
Where to get PrEP?
HBHC offers PrEP to patients in our primary care clinics. Staff are available to help patients make an appointment to see a healthcare provider for PrEP. HBHC also helps patients access assistance programs that may pay for the medication in part or in full.
For additional information or to make an appointment, call 773.388.8885 or walk in during our hours of operation. You can also send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Does PrEP have side effects?
Side effects may include upset stomach, headaches, nausea, and dizziness. Patients who experience these side effects often experience them for only a short time while the body adjusts to the medication.
More serious side effects are extremely rare, and may include liver toxicity, renal impairment, and lactic acidosis. Discuss serious side effects with your provider before starting PrEP.
PrEP is covered by Medicaid and most private insurance plans. Co-pay assistance is available, and many patients with insurance pay nothing out of pocket. If you need help or do not have insurance, ask about patient assistance programs which may pay for the full cost of the medication. Low-income patients may qualify.
More info at HBHC/Prep
Howard Brown Health Center (HBHC) invites community members to participate in a series of town-hall meetings to discuss the health and wellness needs of Chicago’s diverse LGBTQ community. The sessions are part of HBHC’s community needs assessment, conducted every five years to gauge health-related concerns for HBHC’s patient populations.
“Respondents to the 2012 LGBT Community Needs Assessment overwhelmingly identified affordable health services and care as their leading concern,” said David Ernesto Munar, President and CEO. “Our series is designed to dig deeper in order to better understand the community assets and barriers affecting the health of people in our community.”
HBHC will rely on the community needs assessment for planning and quality improvement initiatives. Input from the meetings will be shared widely to spur public awareness and support for LGBTQ health promotion activities.
Sessions will be held at HBHC’s Brown Elephant in Lakeview at 3651 N. Halsted, 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. on the following dates:
Monday, May 12: LGBTQ Older Adults
Facilitators: Medical Director Magda Houlberg, MD and Cecilia Hardacker, Manager of Geriatric Education
Monday, May 19: Lesbians, Bisexual and Queer Women
Facilitators: Betsy Rubinstein, Manager of Lesbian Community Care Project, and Michelle Wetzel, Sr. Vice President for Policy, Strategy and Business Development
Monday, June 2: Gay, Bisexual & Queer Men
Facilitators: Staff Physician Alfred Torrence, MD and Serette King, Health Educator
Monday, June 9: Transgender Individuals
Facilitators: Blue, Program Manager of the Transgender Women of Color Project, and Taylor Casey, Manager of Transgender Health
Monday, June 16: LGBTQ Youth Under 24
Facilitators: Imani Rupert, Director of HBHC’s Broadway Youth Center, and Kristin Keglovitz, PA, Director of Clinical Operations
Interested participants who cannot attend in person can join the discussion virtually on Twitter with the hashtag #HBHCTownHalls.
Aids Foundation Chicago
and AbbVie for a candid discussion about the journey of HIV-positive women. This luncheon will focus on HIV disparaties among people of color and the need for support and better adherence. Q & A session to follow.
Speakers will include Willis Steele, National Advocacy Relations Manager, AbbVie-Virology
and Kathy Bennett, HIV-positive patient advocate, University of Maryland
Join us so you can be inspired for your journey.
Friday, April 25th 11:30-1:30pm
Lawndale Christian Health Center – Skyline Conference Center
3750 W. Ogden Ave Chicago, IL 60623
Please click here to RSVP by Tuesday, April 22.
Learn about exciting scientific advances to bring about a cure for HIV disease, featuring Timothy Brown, a.k.a. “the Berlin Patient,” who once had HIV. Recovered from a deadly form of leukemia and now virus-free because of a difficult bone marrow transplant, Brown embodies the hopes of scientists and millions of people living with the virus. Brown’s road to a cure is unlikely to be traveled by many others, except perhaps some who also have both HIV and cancer. But his journey provides critical proof of a concept that just may help lead to the end of AIDS-by offering clues for how to develop a safe, affordable cure for all. He also offers inspiration and hope for the road ahead. The evening will also include information about Chicago’s efforts on the HIV cure research agenda, and time for Q and A.
Wednesday April 23, 6:00 – 8:00pm
Chicago Cultural Center
78 E. Washington Street
Chicago, IL 60602
Free and open to the public – registration required by Tuesday, April 22.
Ignite Sparks a New Era for the AIDS Foundation of Chicago
Annual fundraising event takes on a new look and ignites hope for the HIV community
WHAT: Light up your night at the AIDS Foundation of Chicago’s annual spring event Ignite: Light our Fight. Ignite Our Future on Friday, May 16. Kindle your creativity with live glass blowing demonstrations by top artists. Enjoy drinking cocktails, worldly cuisine and dancing the night away to music from DJ Moose. This year, the event will take place at a new location: Ignite Glass Studios, offering guests a chance to enjoy the modern space both indoors and out. The event will kickoff AFC’s 30th year of service.
AFC will honor two of distinguished advocates—Michael Bauer, Civic Leadership Award; and Robert Mink, Volunteer of the Year Award.
Funds raised through Ignite will support AFC’s policy, outreach and public education programs. AFC is the largest source of private HIV/AIDS philanthropic support in the Midwest. To learn more visit www.aidschicago.org.
WHEN: Friday, May 16, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
WHERE: Ignite Glass Studios, 401 North Armour Street, Chicago, IL 60642.
TICKETS: Admission: $185 — Includes heavy appetizers, live glass-blowing demonstrations, open bar and dancing.
An imperfect man fights for survival during an uncertain time in
America. Inspired by true events, Ron Woodroof’s story of strength is
told in Dallas Buyers Club, directed by Jean-Marc
Vallée from an original screenplay by Craig Borten & Melisa
Wallack. Spirit Award winner Matthew McConaughey portrays the real-life
character, whose self-interest is galvanized into something much more.
A son of Texas, Ron Woodroof is an electrician and rodeo cowboy. In
1985, he is well into an unexamined existence with a devil-may-care
lifestyle. Suddenly, Ron is blindsided by being diagnosed as
H.I.V.-positive and given 30 days to live. Yet he will not, and does
not, accept a death sentence.
Larry Kramer’s The
Normal Heart returns to Chicago for the first time since its Tony
Award-winning Broadway revival in 2011.
This fall, TimeLine Theatre Company will breathe
new life into one of the strongest historical dramas of the 20th
For younger audiences who never knew the dark,
deadly days of the early epidemic, the play relives the fear and panic of the
early 1980s in urban America. To expose young viewers to this era—and the
grassroots activism it galvanize—seemed to me its greatest virtue.
But of course The
Normal Heart is so much more.
TimeLine Theatre Company graciously provided me a
behind-the-scenes viewing of The Normal
Heart, directed by Nick Bowling. I was moved to tears.
Yes, the drama chronicles the dawning of AIDS
activism in the wake of unconscionable political and institutional neglect.
Fueled by judgmental and homophobic disregard, the early crisis gained strength
in the absence of a robust government response. Yet a humanistic virtue will
always be at the heart of this drama.
Timeless and poignant, the play’s call to action
is as relevant now as it was when play debuted in 1985.
Ned Weeks, played by David Cromer, is a
confrontational activist in New York, fighting to bring attention to a disease plaguing
gay men. He organizes likeminded individuals and creates a grassroots movement
that struggles to gain steam in a culture that would rather turn a blind eye.
That’s not merely a glimpse at where we were. It’s
a commentary of where we are today.
Modern medicine has given many affected individuals
opportunities to survive and thrive with HIV, where once they faced certain
death. Yet the stigma associated with HIV continues to result in delayed or
deferred care for hundreds of thousands of Americans with HIV.
The AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC) estimates
that more than 35,000 people are living with HIV in the Chicago metropolitan area;
however, less than half enjoy access to care. Half. That means that less than 50 percent of this population is
living with a life-threatening disease. Without interventions, they will remain
at risk of serious health decline. What’s more, studies indicate that more than
6,000 individuals in metropolitan Chicago don’t even know that they are HIV-infected.
This group is at high risk for other serious medical conditions and may
inadvertently be exposing others to HIV.
Heart confronts these disparities and it does so with gifted acting and
Every character is deeply complex. Even in rehearsals,
the acting was so crisp and powerful that I looked beyond the lack of costumes,
beyond the missing props, beyond the bare stage, and I returned to the early
‘80s. I stood with Ned who knelt by his partner’s bed in the hospital room. I sat
in the grassroots campaign office, as the fledgling organization struggled to
get the government’s attention. I was
there because the characters became real to me.
Yes, I encourage young people to see The Normal Heart for historical reasons.
But more than that, this drama is about our time. It’s about spurring people
into action whether they’re gay or straight, government officials or private
citizens. Everybody has a role to play in ending this epidemic, and we can only
end it if we work together.
AFC isselling tickets to The Normal Heart
for two nights: Saturday, November 2 and Sunday, December 1, which is World AIDS Day. Proceeds benefit
AFC—but only on these dates and only if you reserve your seat through AFC.
Today, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will be taking over “Testing
first-ever couples HIV prevention strategy and program for gay men, and
will be rolling out the program to 21 major cities,
including Chicago, at 70+ HIV testing sites nationwide.
program enables male couples in the U.S. to learn their HIV status
together and develop a customized HIV prevention and care strategy.
HIV testing programs focus on individuals in the U.S, however, it’s
estimated that one-to two-thirds of new HIV infections came from main
partners among gay couples. The Testing Together program was
developed by Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health and funded by the M∙A∙C AIDS Fund.
Why it Matters:
to research conducted at Emory with the CDC and NIH, it’s estimated
that one-to two-thirds of new HIV infections came from main partners
among gay couples and a significant number
of men in longer-term relationships were unaware of their partner’s HIV
status. Further, because they were in a couple, they felt less at risk
for HIV and therefore less likely to get tested for HIV. Current HIV
testing programs focus on individuals in the
U.S. Due to the growing rate of HIV among gay couples in the U.S.,
Testing Together is designed to help stem this spread.
- According to a report released by the Chicago Public Health Department on the health of gay men in Chicago, 35 percent of gay black
men have HIV. This is followed by 16.8 percent of gay white men, and 12.5 percent for gay Hispanic men.
prevention programs focus on individuals or groups of gay men when, in
fact, most new HIV infections come from main partners in
a relationship. Our ‘Testing Together’ program is the first HIV testing
service geared specifically toward meeting the needs of male couples,”
said Patrick Sullivan, DVM, PhD and Professor at Emory University’s
Rollins School of Public Health. “We’re happy
that our collaboration with CDC is bringing this program to more HIV
organizations in major cities throughout the nation. Bringing this
service to scale for male couples was made possible by the generous
support of the M∙A∙C AIDS Fund.”
It’s been more than 25 years since MARK PATTON played the part of Jesse Walsh in A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge,
but the 49-year-old actor has had more in common with the boy whose
body Freddy Kruger once wanted to possess than most people know.
to play what would have been a groundbreaking gay character on a major
network television series, but what happened next shattered the
promising actor’s Hollywood dreams. “It was what I would consider my
last true hardcore audition,” Patton remembers of nearly getting a part
as a gay character on CBS. He was sitting at table with nearly a dozen
other men. “They began to ask me if I would be comfortable playing a gay
character and telling people I was straight if they began to question
my sexuality? I remember looking around that table and I knew every one
of those men were gay. All I could think about was how everyone I knew
was dying from AIDS and we were having this bullshit conversation. My
heart just broke and that was the line for me. I knew I would never be
able to do what they were asking, so I walked away from Hollywood and
decided to move on to a place where it was totally acceptable to be
underwent a battery of tests and discovered he was not only
HIV-positive, but was also battling a slew of other infections as well,
including pneumonia, thrush, and tuberculosis. “I found out on my 40th
birthday and three days later I was in the hospital,” Patton says. “But
because of the infections I had, they made me take tuberculosis medicine
and that didn’t mix with those older HIV meds. There were so many side
effects. It was like I was poisoned. ” He pauses for a long moment
before he continues. “I almost died there, but thankfully my friends
took me to an AIDS health clinic, which saved my life.”
October 12, 2013
Patio Theater 6008 Irving Park Rd. Chicago, IL 60634
Mark Patton (star of Nightmare on Elm St. 2)
Fred Walton (April Fool’s Day, When A Stranger Calls)
Gary Sherman (Dead and Buried, Raw Meat, Vice Squad)
Noon ’til Noon
Doors Open at 11am.
Film Line-Up Includes:
11:30am-Trailer Trash (Vintage Horror Trailers & Shorts)
Noon-Edison’s Frankenstein (Silent with Live Organ!)
12:30pm – Frankenstein Meets The Wolfman
2pm -The Tomb of Ligeia
3:45pm – Martin
5:30pm – Dead and Buried (dir. Gary Sherman in Person!)
7:30pm – Roger Corman 50’s Trailer Competition
8:15pm– April Fool’s Day (dir. Fred Walton in Person!)
10:15pm– Nightmare on Elm St. 2 (Mark Patton in Person!)
12:15am -The Gate
3:30am – Deep Red
6am – Wild Zero
7:45am – Slither
9:45am – Army of Darkness
Plus: Vendor Tables, Prizes, Surprizes,
A Live Charity Auction For Vital Bridges
(www.vitalbridges.org) and more!
Lots of free parking on the side streets surrounding the theater!
Pay Once, Come And Go As You Like!
Join the Event Page: https://www.facebook.com/
Tickets are $20 pre-sale online at: Brownpapertickets.com
Presale Ticket Locations:
Shake Rattle & Read (4812 N. Broadway, Chicago)
Laurie’s Planet of Sound (4639 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago)
Regulus Coffee (6032 W. Irving Park Rd., Chicago)
Horrorbles (6729 Stanley Ave., Berwyn, IL)
$24 at the door, day of show..
Broadway, in the Uptown neighborhood. It will reopen at the new location
on Oct. 1, with all groups and services running normally by Oct. 7.
Combined Insurance—presently a division of AON.
in advance to make sure your group or appointment is still scheduled to
meet. (773) 989-9400 TPAN
Howard Brown Health Center (HBHC) is pleased to announce the opening of Aris Health by Howard Brown Health Center,
its new facility which provides comprehensive, primary healthcare and
support services for the entire community – regardless of its ability to
Brown Health Center is focused on creating a patient-centered medical
home for everyone in the community,” said Karma Israelsen, interim
president and CEO of Howard Brown Health Center. “We have designed a
health center that is excellent in every way. Aris Health, the newest
location that is part of the HBHC family, demonstrates our focus and
priority on providing quality healthcare for all.”
in the heart of Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood at 3245 N. Halsted,
Aris Health offers 9 exam rooms, and increase accessibility as a
standalone, street-level building with free on-site parking. Aris Health
will implement a patient-centered care model which ensures that
patients are involved in the care they receive from their medical
providers. This comprehensive approach focuses on the whole person,
providing coordinated medical and behavioral health services to meet the
needs of patients.
Health will continue to improve the patient experience and ensure they
receive quality medical care by using new technologies and operating
efficiencies. Through GE’s Developing Health™, a program launched in
Chicago in 2011 to increase access to quality healthcare through
skill-based volunteering, GE employees trained staff in strategies
designed to increase patient flow and reduce wait times. They also
helped prepare for the site opening. “Community health care centers
provide essential services and increase access to quality health care at
the local level,” said Linda Fiore, executive champion, Developing
Health Chicago. “We take our volunteer commitment to our community
partners very seriously.”
addition to new technology, Aris Health includes an on-site Walgreens
Pharmacy for patients to receive readily accessible prescription
medication. Walgreen’s has been a committed strategic health partner of
Howard Brown Health Center for more than 30 years. “The Walgreens
Pharmacy at Aris Health is part of our expanded network of
community-based health solutions,” said Denise Scarpelli, market
pharmacy director at Walgreens. “We are proud to work with Howard Brown
Health Center to create better health outcomes for their patients.”
new location will expand HBHC’s specialized geriatric care, which is
critical to the community because aging LGBT members have difficulty
accessing culturally appropriate healthcare. HBHC’s board-
geriatrician and Medical Director Magda Houlberg, M.D. will continue
working with patients and lead the Aris Health team. Aris Health will
also carry on HBHC’s tradition and specialization in lesbian, gay,
bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) health.
are thrilled that Aris Health will allow us to serve everyone in the
community, regardless of the ability to pay, in a space designed with
patients in mind,” says Dr. Houlberg. “Our team treats each patient as a
part of the HBHC family, ensuring a welcoming, comfortable environment.
The new space will enable us to continue our important work, and serve
more patients in need.”
addition to the support given by Walgreen’s and GE, members of
Chicago’s artist community donated artwork to be displayed in the new
space. Gethsemane Garden Center donated landscaping services to create a
garden upon entering the facility.
Aris Health will be open Monday, Wednesday thru Friday
from 9a to 5p and Tuesdays from 10a to 7p. The Walgreen’s Pharmacy
will also operate during these times. For more information, call 773.296.8400.
Monday July 15th, Chicago House Opens Nation’s First Transgender Housing
Local Gov’t Officials to Cut Ribbon; Openly Transgender Hollywood Producer
and Chicago native
Lana Wachowski to attend
July 15th is the Opening of Chicago House’s NEW TransLife Center (TLC), a first in the nation facility to offer full, wrap-around services to members of the transgender community and address the unique housing and employment needs of Chicago’s transgender populations.
addition to funding by Alphawood Foundation Chicago and multiple
corporate and private donors, TLC has been wholly designed with time,
materials and furnishing donations by Designs for Dignity (www.designsfordignity.org),
a Chicago non-profit organization that transforms non-profit spaces of
marginalized populations into more functional, nurturing environments.
To celebrate Pride Week, Cook County Health and Hospital Systems and Howard Brown Health Center
demonstrated their unique collaboration to provide medical and
behavioral care for the LGBTQ community and LGBTQ allies by encouraging
Howard Brown patients to apply for CountyCare, a new, no-cost health
Operating Officer of the Ruth M. Rothstein CORE Center and Chairman of
the Department of Internal Medicine at Cook County Health and Hospitals
System, and Karma Israelsen, interim President and Chief Executive
Officer of Howard Brown, welcomed visitors to the center and offered a
tour of their facilities that serve the community.
Cook County residents interested in applying should call 312-864-8200 Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., or Saturday between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. To learn more about CountyCare, visit www.CountyCare.com.
CountyCare is a new Illinois Medicaid program. Patients choose a primary care site from
participating local hospitals and healthcare sites throughout the
county, including Cook County Health and Hospitals System locations.The patient is assigned a doctor, nurse, social worker and medical assistant to manage their health care through a new Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) model.
CountyCare program was approved under the federal government’s 1115
Medicaid Waiver, which permits CCHHS to early-enroll 115,000 individuals
who will be eligible for Medicaid in 2014 through the Affordable Care
Taverna 750 is proud to announce that the entire month of May they have joined forces with four incredible teams; Team
Anniversary at Benefit
on May 9th
AIDS Legal Council of Chicago (“ALCC”)
is set to host “A Salute to ALCC” on Thursday, May 9 at Kirkland and
Ellis LLP. The benefit will serve to commemorate twenty-five years of
ALCC improving the lives of low-income people and their families
impacted by HIV. The evening will feature innovative food, open bar,
music, and prizes.
The event will bring together ALCC supporters from a quarter century of
service: past and present board members, staff, and interns, as well as
individual and corporate supporters.
“The response from the
community surrounding our 25th anniversary has been tremendous, and we
look forward to a wonderful evening to commemorate the life-saving legal
work that the Council does each day. The HIV epidemic continues to grow
and impact more and more communities. Thanks to the wonderful support
from our community and corporate partners, ALCC will be here as long as
we are needed,” said ALCC Executive Director Ann Hilton Fisher.
Over 200 people are anticipated to attend “A Salute to ALCC” on May 9th. Tickets start at just $50 and are available at ONLINE NOW.
Special thanks to our event sponsors: Kirkland & Ellis,
Sidley Austin, Winston & Strawn, McDermott Will & Emery, Jenner
& Block, DLA Piper, Mayer Brown, Schiff Hardin, Marshall Gerstein
& Borun, Clark Hill, Wintersteen & Dunning, Reed Smith,
Sidetrack, BestGayChicago.com, ChicagoPride.com, The L Stop, and Windy
City Media Group.
Incorporated in 1988, AIDS Legal Council of Chicago offers free legal
assistance to people with HIV and their families; educates service
providers, HIV-positive individuals and their families, and the general
public through comprehensive education and training programs; and
advocates statewide and nationally for fair treatment of those with HIV
and their families.
More cuts coming to ADAP.
Governor Pat Quinn released a proposed $35.6 million state budget on
March 6 that would reduce state HIV/AIDS funding by $4.27 million, or 16
to President Obama, many people with HIV will gain new health insurance
coverage through the Affordable Care Act, providing partial relief to
the state’s AIDS Drug
Assistance Program (ADAP),” said David Ernesto Munar, President/CEO of
the AIDS Foundation of Chicago. “Illinois has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reinvest ADAP savings to fund HIV prevention
and service programs that will reduce new HIV cases and improve health outcomes.”
the Governor’s proposed budget, total state HIV spending would drop
from $26.23 million in FY13 to $21.75 million in FY14. AFC has learned
from sources at IDPH that the
funding cut would come from ADAP, which provides life-saving
medications to people with the disease.
2014, many current ADAP clients will transition to Medicaid or
subsidized private insurance programs available through new online
insurance marketplaces, also called exchanges.
This shift will reduce the need for state spending on ADAP. “Allegedly”.
is a communicable disease,” continued Munar. “The scientific evidence
is clear that when people with HIV receive clinical care, treatment, and
other essential services, the risk for
further HIV transmission is substantially decreased.”
“About half of people with HIV are
not receiving medications or medical care,” said
Ramon Gardenhire, AFC’s director of government relations.
“Illinois should reinvest the savings from the ACA to connect people
with HIV to medical care: culturally sensitive boots-on-the-ground
outreach workers, substance abuse
and mental health treatment resources, and stable housing and
transportation options. Illinois should reinvest in these services since
the unmet need is so great. Doing so will reduce new HIV cases and
future medical spending.”
enacted, HIV funding would be cut for the third year in a row. Since
2011, Illinois has reduced state HIV funding by $9 million, or 30
funding cuts have resulted in dramatic decreases in the availability of
HIV prevention, housing and supportive services across the state,” said
Gardenhire. “It’s time for Illinois
to stop this trend and fund targeted investments that will help lower the burden and cost of HIV upon the state.”
ensure that people with HIV continue to receive services, the General
Assembly must immediately act to extend Medicaid coverage to all
low-income people, including people with HIV.
Sponsored by State Rep. Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago) and Sen. Heather Steans (D-Chicago),
Senate Bill 26,
pending in the Illinois House, would
authorize Illinois to take advantage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA)
to provide Medicaid to about 342,000 low-income Illinois citizens who
are currently uninsured, including thousands who are living
with HIV/AIDS. Thanks to health reform, Illinois will be able to offer
Medicaid to this population at no expense to the state for the first
three years, and in later years the state will never pay more than 10
percent of the coverage cost.
26, if approved by the Illinois House, would shift costs for HIV
medication from the state to the federal government, yielding savings to
Illinois that could be used to strengthen HIV
care and prevention efforts.
together with HIV/AIDS medical and community-based services
organizations, calls on the Illinois General Assembly to reverse the
proposed funding cuts and pass SB 26 to gain federal
funding to provide HIV care through Medicaid.
urges advocates to join us in Springfield to lobby for important
HIV/AIDS issues in April and May of this year. Contact Lucy Baglin at
for more information on Medicaid advocacy.
Illinois’ subsidized high risk health insurance pool IPXP to stop accepting applications March 2nd, 2013
care reform announced this past Friday that the subsidized plans that
are currently insuring more than 100,000 individuals nationwide, will be
closing their doors to new enrollees months before other coverage is
available on the new insurance exchanges.
most of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act do not become
effective until January 1, 2014, the law set up interim plans, called
“Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plans” for people who could not buy
health insurance on the private market because of serious health
conditions, including HIV. In Illinois, the state opened the Illinois
Pre-Existing Insurance Plan (“IPXP”) in August 2010. Approximately 3000
people now have insurance though IPXP. Although those people currently
enrolled in those plans will continue to have coverage until January 1,
2014, when they will be able to move to private insurance coverage,
Friday’s announcement means that no new applications will be accepted
after March 2, 2013.
Fisher, Executive Director of AIDS Legal Council of Chicago, explained
why this is bad news for people with HIV or any other pre-existing
condition that blocks them from getting private insurance. “IPXP has
been an important source of health care coverage for people with HIV,
including people on the AIDS Drug Assistance Program whose income
climbs above 300% of the federal poverty level (about $35,000) but do
not have health insurance on the job and cannot afford to pay for their
medications themselves. “ The state has been able to refer those
individuals to IPXP, and to help pay the IPXP premiums, so that they do
not lose access to their medications.
explained that IPXP was always meant to be a temporary program, set to
expire once pre-existing conditions no longer prevent people from buying
insurance. “But,” she added “we always assumed that IPXP would
continue to accept new enrollees until very close to January 1st.”
“It appears,” she added,” that IPXP is a victim of its own success.
There was a limited pool of money available for the plans, and in order
to make sure they can continue to pay claims of current enrollees, they
now have to cut off future ones.”
Legal Council is getting out the word about the closing of enrollment,
and encouraging anyone who has been without insurance for at least six
months to quickly apply for IPXP. NOW!!
ALCC is available to answer questions or assist with the enrollment process and can be reached at 312-427-8990.
25 years ago, AIDS Legal Council of Chicago works to preserve, promote,
and protect the legal rights of men, women, children, and families in
the metropolitan Chicago area impacted by HIV and AIDS. The Council
provides free direct legal services to people in need, educates the
public about HIV-related legal issues, and advocates for social policies
that ensure fair treatment for all people affected by HIV and AIDS.
More than 20,000 people are living with HIV/AIDS in Chicago – three times the national prevalence rate.
In some Chicago neighborhoods, HIV rates have climbed to a staggering 53 percent in recent years.
That’s why the AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC) is marking this World AIDS Day by announcing a new campaign called
Need2Know HIV, an initiative to educate people about the importance of HIV testing.
partnership with Abbott, a Chicago-headquartered global health care
company, AFC is using social media platforms such as Facebook and
Twitter to increase awareness and encourage conversation
about testing. The campaign began on World AIDS Day, December 1, and
continues through the month.
What sets Need2Know HIV
apart from other HIV testing campaigns? It highlights the importance of
diagnosing HIV in its earliest stages, as well as ongoing viral load
for those living with HIV.
many HIV-positive people are not diagnosed in the early phase of the
disease — when they are most contagious — and unknowingly spread the
virus to others. Testing is critical
to stopping the spread of HIV, though many people are not getting
tested and may not realize significant advances in testing technology
that are now available.
simple: we can’t end AIDS without a stronger commitment to HIV testing,
and that starts with educating people about the importance of testing
to know their status and manage HIV,” said
David Ernesto Munar, AFC president/CEO.
People can show their support and educate others by visiting and “liking” the
Need2Know HIV campaign on Facebook, Munar said.
diagnostic testing allows individuals to know within two weeks of
exposure if they are infected. The newest HIV combo tests can detect
both antigens (the actual HIV virus) and antibodies
to HIV (the body’s response to fight the virus). HIV combo tests allow
people to know their status weeks sooner than they potentially could
with traditional antibody-only HIV tests.
those individuals who live with HIV, monitoring the disease plays a key
role in their overall treatment. Ongoing viral load molecular tests help
patients and their health care providers
monitor the response of the virus to antiretroviral drug treatments,
helping to guide treatment decisions.
detection provides information to help people make decisions that may
reduce risky behavior. It also allows people who are HIV positive to
start on antiretroviral therapy sooner, which
benefits long-term health and may also reduce HIV transmission rates by
nearly 30 years, Abbott has been committed to fighting HIV by developing
important tests and therapies for patients,” said Brian Blaser,
executive vice president, Diagnostics Products,
Abbott. “Our commitment to HIV continues today as we partner together
to launch efforts such as
Need2Know HIV to help educate people about the critical role testing can play in stemming the tide of this virus.”
Join Coach Ross and Paul for a Hawaiian Luau benefiting the Team to End AIDS (T2) and the AIDS Foundation of Chicago.
a great organization. A special thank you to T’s Bar and Restaurant for donating the space and a portion of the night’s drink and food tab to Team to End AIDS!
Coach Ross will be running the Honolulu Marathon for the fifth consecutive year and this will be his 18th marathon over the past 5 years. He has been a T2 Coach for two years and an AFC runner for all five years.
The Honolulu Marathon will be Paul Ketz’s third full marathon with T2 and his fourth event with the Team to End AIDS in 2012. In addition to more marathons with T2 in 2013, Paul will complete his first triathlon and Half Iron Man races. TUESDAY DEC 4th 7-10pm
In 1986, the first Christmas tree went up in the halls of Chicago House’s hospice.
On November 17, EdgeAlliance, formerly known as AIDSCare,
Anniversary of its founding.
largest fundraising event of the year attracting over 400 community,
corporate and civic leaders in celebration of EdgeAlliance’’s 20-year
milestone and YOU! our cherished friends and partners.
you are unable to attend The YOU! Ball, please consider making acontribution in lieu of attending the event! All donations will be used
to continue the work of EdgeAlliance in helping those impacted by
HIV/AIDS and Veterans who are homeless.
It was announced that local
non-profit leader in AIDS services, Chicago House, was selected as one of eight
national grant sites to study the link between HIV and retention in care of
transgender women of color. The study, which will be housed in Chicago
House’s all new TransLife Center (TLC), will allow $300,000 per year for
the next five years from the Health Resources and Services Administration
(HRSA) as a Special Program of National Significance.
The TLC programming will serve as a
collaborative comprehensive and multi-strategy approach to identifying HIV-positive
transgender women of color who are out of care, while engaging them
successfully in accessible, quality HIV primary care.
the resources and expertise of five project partners – AIDS Foundation of
Chicago, Center On Halsted, Lurie Children’s Hospital, Heartland Health
Outreach, and South Side Help Center – Chicago House will identify
transgender women of color living with HIV, create a broad network of
culturally competent healthcare providers, and deliver an array of services that
help marginalized transgender women overcome barriers to care.
“The TransLife Center Programming will incorporate
three tiers of support to the habitually overlooked “T” in the LGBT
community,” commented Chicago House CEO, Stan
will provide a safe and understanding home to transgender men and women,
through the rebirth of our original 24-hour-care building in Edgewater and
multiple scattered site units throughout the city. TransWorks, an offshoot of our highly
successful employment program, will work with trans men and women to identify
their unique employment placement needs and prepare them for the workplace
through resume writing, interview skills, and connections to culturally
competent job opportunities.” Sloan continued, “The final
element, TransHealth, will
connect trans men and women to non judgmental health care addressing their
unique needs through Dr. Rob Garafolo of Lurie Children’s Hospital.”
HRSA, an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human
Services, is the primary Federal agency for improving access to health care
services for people who are uninsured, isolated or medically vulnerable.
“Chicago House remains committed to providing the best
in services to the homeless and HIV affected, and the integral TransHealth funding from HRSA further validates
the needs that we have identified within the transgender community,”
Sloan said. “The growth in reaching out to this population
represents the same trailblazing growth our founders had in mind 27 years ago,
and it is a wonderful next incarnation for our former hospice site. The
transgender community has been so strategic and receptive in helping us develop
the programs, and we are excited to begin this next step of Chicago
The first organization of it’s kind in the Midwest, since 1985 Chicago
House has provided permanent housing and supportive services to men,
women and children living with HIV and AIDS. Their programs have since
expanded to include community case management, substance abuse counseling, HIV
prevention, medical adherence and the Midwest’s
first employment training and placement program specific to people with
HIV. Chicago House also
offers free, anonymous rapid HIV testing. For more information, visit www.chicagohouse.org.
We’re only 15 days away from AIDS Run & Walk
Chicago. It’s shaping up to be quite a day with Wanda Sykes and Michael
Feinstein joining us at the start line, and Jamar Rogers from NBC’s The
Voice performing during closing ceremonies. September
30 will be filled with some great energy and awareness at Soldier
Field. Thank you for joining us for this spectacular event and in our
fight against HIV/AIDS.
Today and Wednesday are two very important
deadlines for the event.
Today is the last day that RUNNERS can
pre-register for the event.
For WALKERS, the last day to pre-register
will be end of day Wednesday, September 19. Interested participants
may pre-register online at Aidsrunwalk.org.
The 25th Hour: Celebrating A Quarter-Century of Service, an important
event that will commemorate our 25th year of providing services to
Chicago’s HIV community at the historic Chicago Cultural Center. This
distinctive event will be a chic, fun-filled celebration with special
chef tastings, visual art, and live music by the soulful singer, Jamar
Rogers from NBC’s The Voice. TPAN will honor individuals who have made a
huge impact on Chicago’s HIV community.
As Chicago’s oldest peer-led HIV service provider, TPAN ensures that
all people living with or at risk for HIV have access, under one roof,
to free, confidential testing and counseling; education about the best
options for prevention, treatment, and ancillary care through our
programs and national journal, Positively Aware; and ongoing
psychosocial support. TPAN also goes out into the community to provide
prevention education and testing.
After a quarter century of service, the work continues. TPAN is
committed to living. We hope you will join us in that commitment.
October 4th, 2012 5:30-8:30 at Chicago beautiful Cultural Center!
Tickets: $75 – $150 ONLINE NOW
From Robert Garofalo:
Preparing for the Ride for AIDS Chicago has been an extremely
challenging and rewarding endeavor for me and for the more than 250
other Riders who have been preparing for this two-day, 200 mile bike
I think we’re ready. It’s the support of friends, family and
complete strangers that make this adventure worth it for me and the
A good friend has offered to match dollar for dollar, up to $10,000,
every contribution posted on my page starting July 10, 2012. Your
contribution today will be doubled! Please show your support for me, my
fellow riders and for the people who receive services at TPAN.
100% of donations directly support services at TPAN. For 25 years TPAN
has empowered people living with HIV through peer-led programming,
support services, information dissemination, and advocacy. For friends
who rely on them, these services are vital.
The Ride for AIDS Chicago has already surpassed last year’s recording
breaking $535,000. We have a goal of raising $600,000. Please join us
in this challenge!
**I know many of you are being directed to my page due to the generosity
of other riders. KNOW that we are all raising monies toward the same
goal and please make note of who you are honoring with a donation. I
have met some of the most remarkable, generous and talented people as
part of this ride and I know TOGETHER we can reach this challenge
Organizers of the AIDS Run & Walk Chicago will kick-off its recruitment and fundraising efforts on
Tuesday, July 17 from 5:30-7:30 p.m.
at Cactus Bar & Grill, 404 S. Wells St.
At the July 17 event, interested parties will be able to register and get more information on the AIDS Run & Walk Chicago. Proceeds from select Patron tequila cocktails will also partially benefit the AIDS Foundation of Chicago.
To date, 36 beneficiaries and 26 other teams had registered for AIDS Run & Walk Chicago, which will take place on Sunday, Sept. 30, at Soldier Field and offer a 5K and 10K running routes and a 5K walk route. Organizers expect more than 150 teams to register.
AIDS Run & Walk Chicago is the city’s largest outdoor fundraiser for organizations that provide life-saving services for people living with HIV/AIDS. The event is produced by the AIDS Foundation of Chicago and Special Events Management.
Pre-registration ranges from $30-$45 before September 14. Registration is $50 after the pre-registration deadline. To register as a fundraising individual or as a team, visit aidsrunwalk.org or call (312) 334-0946.
Founded in 1985 by community activists and physicians, the AIDS Foundation of Chicago is a catalyst for local, national, and international action against HIV/AIDS.