Mapping Pathways is a multi-national project to develop and nurture a research-driven, community-led global understanding of the emerging evidence base around the adoption of antiretroviral-based prevention strategies to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The evidence base is more than results from clinical trials - it must include stakeholder and community perspectives as well.

21 August 2012

U.S. Preventive Services Task Force May Soon Make HIV Testing Routine

via the Huffington Post, by Salimah Ebrahim

Hiv Testing RoutineWASHINGTON, Aug 20 (Reuters) - A U.S. health panel may soon make HIV testing as standard a practice as checking cholesterol levels, a move that would fundamentally change how the virus is detected and treated.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task force, a government-backed group of clinicians and scientists, is expected to make a new recommendation on HIV screening available for public comment before the end of the year.

Health officials close to the panel, speaking on condition of anonymity, see it making a positive recommendation for routine screening, updating their current position, issued in 2005, which leaves the decision up to doctors.

Under President Barack Obama's healthcare law, passed in 2010, insurers are required to cover preventive services that are recommended by the task force.

"This would be one of those major sea changes ... moving away from what has been somewhat the segmentation of HIV - either by population, by geography," said Michael Kharfen, chief of community outreach for the Washington, D.C., Department of Health. Kharfen, who worked on the frontlines of the HIV epidemic in New York in the 1980s, recalls when the prognosis for the disease was "practically certain you were going to die.

"It still will take culture change for medical providers, but this will be a tremendous leap," he said

Read the rest.

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