Elton John celebrates 25 years of AIDS foundation

By : Wire Report
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NEW YORK (AP) – A teary and emotional Elton John celebrated the 25th anniversary of his AIDS foundation with a gala in New York City, raising about $4.4 million and telling the audience that they would end the AIDS epidemic by 2030.

John’s efforts to raise awareness and fight against AIDS were lauded by former U.S. President Bill Clinton, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and singer Aretha Franklin, who closed the event with a collection of songs.

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Michigan sees hepatitis A outbreak in gay men

By : Wire Report
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DETROIT (AP) – State health officials investigating a hepatitis A outbreak in southeast Michigan are reporting an increase in cases among men who are sexually active with men.

There have been 11 such cases so far in October, compared to a total of 10 over the preceding 14 months, the Detroit Free Press reported.

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Gays under consideration for presidential AIDS advisory panel

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Gay Republicans knowledgeable on AIDS issues and LGBT people involved in AIDS work have been among those contacted by a Trump administration official for a possible appointment to the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS known as PACHA, according sources familiar with the advisory body.

The outreach to potential LGBT appointees began shortly after President Trump issued an executive order on Sept. 29 extending the life of PACHA and 31 other presidential advisory committees for at least one more year.

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California reduces penalty for HIV transmission

By : Wire Report
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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – California Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation reducing the penalty for knowingly exposing some to HIV.

The legislation signed Oct. 6 is part of an attempt by Democratic lawmakers to reverse the tough policies enacted during the AIDS scare of the 1980s and 90s.

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Study: Chronic diarrhea among top HIV/AIDS symptoms

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Josh Robbins is an HIV/AIDS advocate from Nashville, Tenn., who is using Mytesi, a medication that prevents chronic diarrhea in people with the virus. He spoke with the Washington Blade on Sept. 7, 2017, at the U.S. Conference on AIDS in D.C. (Washington Blade photo by Michael K. Lavers)

A study that a pharmaceutical company released earlier this month indicates chronic diarrhea is among the top symptoms from which people with HIV/AIDS suffer.

Napo Pharmaceuticals, which is a subsidiary of Jaguar Health, on Sept. 12 released the results of a survey of 271 board certified gastroenterologists in the U.S.

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Central Florida’s Hope & Help to relocate, launch new website

By : Rachel Dececco
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Hope & Help announced the grand opening of a new location, along with the launch of their new website, both occurring Aug. 1, less than two months before the annual Headdress Ball.

The beloved non-profit organization, which opened in 1988, will be located at 707 Mendham Blvd in Orlando as it continues as Central Florida’s oldest and largest HIV/AIDS testing, education and care center.

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South African girl’s HIV infection seems under control without AIDS drugs

By : Wire Report
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A South African girl born with the AIDS virus has kept her infection suppressed for more than eight years after stopping anti-HIV medicines , more evidence that early treatment can occasionally cause a long remission that, if it lasts, would be a form of cure.

Her case was revealed July 24, at an AIDS conference in Paris, where researchers also gave encouraging results from tests of shots every month or two instead of daily pills to treat HIV.

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Addressing mental health concerns within the minority LGBTQ community

By : Samuel Johnson
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“Mental health is not a lack of willpower. Mental health is not being inflicted by the Devil. Mental health isn’t about not being strong enough to cope with life.” This is the opinion of psychiatrist Dr. Z. (She has requested that her name remain anonymous).

Dr. Z is a Hillsborough National Alliance on Mental Illness board member and has both clinical knowledge as well as the mental health delivery system. Untreated mental health, as she views it, is a serious public health issue; “Not in the contagious sense of the word. I can’t catch depression from someone else. I can’t catch schizophrenia from someone else. I can’t catch bipolar [disorder] from someone else. But how I’m feeling does impact others. For example, social ails like homelessness, like prison populations, where a lot of that has to do with untreated mental illness; society at large is impacted by the way we that we approach the treatment of mental health.”

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Kenya 1st in Africa to use generic drug to fight HIV

By : Wire Report
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NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) – Kenya is the first country in Africa to introduce a generic version of the current drug of choice for people living with HIV, officials said June 28.

Kenya’s government and the global health initiative Unitaid announced that the East African nation will make the generic version of Dolutegravir available for routine use. They said Nigeria and Uganda will introduce the drug later this year.

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HIV program deals with budget cuts

By : Wire Report
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STAMFORD, Conn. (AP) – The man with the cane who came to the clinic in 2003 was certain.

“I have it,” he said.

“What do you have, sir?” Ivette González recalled asking him.

“I have HIV,” he said.

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Carson defends HIV housing cuts: ‘The pie is only so big’

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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Secretary of Housing & Urban Development Ben Carson defended on Thursday proposed cuts to housing programs for low-income people with HIV, making the case “the pie is only so big” for federal government support.

Carson made the remarks during a House appropriations subcommittee hearing under questioning from Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Ill.), who queried the secretary on the 7 percent cut in President Trump’s proposed budget to the Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) program.

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Study: Enzyme key to flushing out hidden HIV

By : Staff Reports from the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Scientists at the Gladstone Institutes discovered that an enzyme called SMYD2 could be a new therapeutic target for flushing out the HIV that hides in infected individuals. Overcoming this latent virus remains the most significant obstacle to a cure, amfAR, the Foundation for AIDS Research, said in a press release.

While drug therapy allows people living with HIV to lead relatively normal lives, it also comes with adverse effects. In addition, patients must stay on the drugs for life to prevent the virus hiding in their body from reactivating. In the early stages of infection, HIV hides in viral reservoirs in a type of immune cells called T cells. This dormant, or latent, virus can then spontaneously reactivate and rekindle infection if drug therapy is stopped.

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