AIDS United Announces Five Access To Care Programs Supported by a Grant from Social Innovation Fund

Washington, D.C. – November 15, 2012 – Formerly incarcerated individuals with HIV/AIDS,  people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) in the U.S. South and others disproportionately affected by the HIV epidemic will have access to HIV-specific care thanks to new grants awarded by AIDS United for its Access to Care (A2C) initiative. The awards, supported by a grant from the Social Innovation Fund (SIF), will help fund five innovative community-based programs that facilitate access to health care by strengthening support and service systems and addressing barriers that affect people’s readiness or ability to participate in HIV health care. Each grant represents a collaboration of multiple organizations in each community, with a lead organization serving as the project grantee. Those organizations are:

  • ActionAIDS - Philadelphia, PA
    For an intensive case management program designed to increase the rate of retention in health care for individuals who have been recently released from the Philadelphia Prison System by addressing factors that serve as barriers to care, including poverty, homelessness, and behavioral health issues.
  • Damien Center – Indianapolis, IN
    For a program entitled "Damien CareLink," which will provide coordinated HIV services and linkage to care for HIV-positive individuals who are currently not in care by addressing numerous and complex barriers to care linkage, including issues such as mental health, substance abuse, fear, and stigma, with a special emphasis on homelessness. 
  • Louisiana Public Health Institute (LPHI) – Baton Rouge, LA
    For a program entitled the Louisiana Reentry Initiative (LRI), which is a partnership between LPHI and Louisiana Office of Public Health in New Orleans, the Pennington Family Foundation, the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, and the Capitol Area Reentry Program (in partnership with the Earl K. Long Early Intervention Clinic in Baton Rouge and the Baton Rouge Area Alcohol and Drug Center, Inc.). LRI's goal is to address the unique retention needs of formerly incarcerated individuals living with HIV infection in Baton Rouge.
  • Pacific AIDS Education and Training Center (PAETC)  -  Los Angeles, CA
    For a program called the Prisoner Assistance Network (PAN), a collaboration of Pacific AIDS Education and Training Center (PAETC), Keck School of Medicine of USC with the Center for Health Justice the Los Angeles County/University of Southern California Medical Center Rand Schrader 5P21 Clinic and MOSAIC, Inc. The initiative will provide re-entry services for people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA), leaving incarceration and returning to LA County, who are over 18, low or no income, and of any gender. Inmates living with HIV will be screened and linked to medical and mental health services and to substance abuse treatment, housing, job placement, and other needed social services outside corrections facilities, as they reintegrate back into their communities.
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham – Birmingham, AL
    For a program called “Birmingham Access to Care (BA2C),” which is a collaborative effort between the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) 1917 Clinic and Birmingham AIDS Outreach (BAO). The BA2C program will identify PLWHA who have fallen out of care, investigate influences that contribute to their dropping out of care, assess motivation of PLWHA to return to care, and provide necessary re-engagement in that care.

The Social Innovation Fund, an initiative of the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), was enacted under the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, and targets millions of public-private dollars to expand effective solutions across three issue areas: economic opportunity, healthy futures and youth development and school support.  AIDS United’s SIF grant is in support of the “healthy futures” issue area, and requires a 2:1 match from the private sector that will leverage hundreds of thousands of additional funds locally that enhance the health and welfare of people living with HIV/AIDS through increased access to life-saving HIV care and treatment.

“To end HIV in the United States we must be vigilant about linking people living with HIV/AIDS in our most impacted populations to the care that they need,” said AIDS United Senior Vice President Vignetta Charles.  “We now know that access to quality HIV care not leads to better individual health outcomes, but also helps prevent the spread of the virus within communities. We are thrilled that funding from the Social Innovation Fund allows us to support these new projects to overcome barriers to HIV care in some of our nation’s most severely affected populations, including people who are formerly incarcerated, people who are homeless, and people who are living with HIV in the U.S. South.”

More than 700,000 people living with HIV/AIDS in the United States are not receiving the life-saving care they need due to a host of issues that can include stigma, poverty and limited access to appropriate care. In addition to the specific objectives of the Social Innovation Fund, AIDS United’s A2C partnership with SIF is contributing to the successful implementation of the “Increasing Access to Care” pillar of National HIV/AIDS Strategy (NHAS).   

For more information about AIDS United’s A2C Initiative, visit http://www.aidsunited.org/community-impact/access-to-care-a2c.

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About AIDS United

Born out of the merger of the National AIDS Fund and AIDS Action in late 2010, AIDS United’s mission is to end the AIDS epidemic in the United States.  AIDS United combines  strategic grantmaking and capacity-building with national advocacy and regional organizing to ensure access to life-saving HIV/AIDS care and prevention services and to advance sound HIV/AIDS related policy for U.S. populations and communities most impacted by the epidemic. AIDS United provided more than $7 million in grants last year supporting more than 400 AIDS organizations across the United States.

About the Corporation for National and Community Service

The Corporation for National and Community Service is a federal agency that engages more than 5 million Americans in service through Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and the Social Innovation Fund, and leads President Obama's national call to service initiative, United We Serve. For more information, visit NationalService.gov.

About the Social Innovation Fund

The Social Innovation Fund (SIF) is a powerful approach to transforming lives and communities that positions the federal government to be a catalyst for impact—mobilizing public and private resources to find and grow community-based nonprofits with evidence of strong results. By fostering private and public collaborations that identify, evaluate, and expand promising nonprofits, the SIF increases access to effective programs that enable people and communities in need to overcome their most pressing challenges in the areas of economic opportunity, youth development, and health. To learn more visit www.NationalService.gov/Innovation