Online Program

Overcoming barriers to linkage to care for young men who have sex with men in a non-clinical setting

Monday, November 4, 2013

Alan Johnson, MPH, AIDS Foundation of Chicago, Chicago, IL
Annie Vulpas, BA, Ann and Robert H Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Chicago, IL
Issue: The Chicago Department of Public Health notes that Black MSM under the age of 30 are the only sub-population currently experiencing annual increases in new HIV diagnoses.

Description: AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC) has partnered with ABT Associates, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) on a national demonstration project to create models and best practices to focus on streamlining HIV testing and linkage to care (L2C) activities for men who have sex with men (MSM). The primary goal of the project is to identify previously undiagnosed HIV infections among MSM through expanded testing initiatives and link 85% of them to HIV medical care.

AFC has created the HIV-VIP Linkage to Care Program, and is currently utilizing both its extensive partnerships and existing capacity to expand testing and linkage to care among MSM. The program highlights medical homes, access to an HIV medical specialist, and reserved appointment times for clients.

Lessons Learned: HIV-VIP works to structurally eliminate delayed linkage to HIV medical care, by combating barriers of this targeted population. After incorporating HIV-VIP program, Linkage to Care rates have improved by over 50 percent. The purpose is to discuss both the successes and limitations of linking MSM that test in a high-impact testing initiative to an HIV specialist though our HIV-VIP collaborative.

Recommendations: Findings suggest that it is feasible to create and implement collaborative community based linkage to care programs to increase linkage. The project model shows promise as a prevention strategy to increase linkage to care.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Chronic disease management and prevention

Learning Objectives:
Define the HIV-VIP Linkage to Care Model. Identify and successes and challenges associated with linking YMSM to medical care.

Keyword(s): HIV/AIDS, Community-Based Partnership

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: As a MPH candidate, I have worked on multiple federally funded behavioral health grants focused on HIV prevention. After receiving a Master of Public Health degree, I started working on a CDC funded demonstration project at a Non-profit organization that focuses on HIV Prevention, Education, Policy, and Advocacy.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.