PrEP may be tested against coronavirus if HIV meds shown to work

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
Comments: 0

With the coronavirus claiming thousands of lives across the globe, medical experts are throwing any and all medications they can against the disease , including drugs used to treat HIV/AIDS that — if effective in clinic trials — may turn attention toward Truvada, commonly used as PrEP for HIV prevention.

One medical expert told the Washington Blade if the early promising results for the HIV drug Remdesivir hold out in clinical trials, the drug Truvada — the more standard medication against HIV/AIDS — could also work against the coronavirus.

Continue Reading >>

Trump’s budget seeks increased HIV funds — but housing, global programs cut

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
Comments: 0
ABOVE: President Donald Trump’s budget seeks $716 million in FY-21 to beat HIV/AIDS. (Screen capture via YouTube)

With a declared goal of beating HIV/AIDS in the United States by 2030, President Trump this week in his $4.8 trillion budget request for fiscal year 2021 proposed major increases in HIV/AIDS funds, but global programs and social services used by low-income people with the disease face steep cuts.

At first glance, the proposed request Trump unveiled Feb. 10 is a major victory for advocates hoping he’d make good on his stated vision to beat HIV/AIDS by 2030, which he renewed in his State of the Union address last week.

Continue Reading >>

12.12.19 Publisher’s Desk

By : Rick Claggett
Comments: 0

Welcome to Watermark’s annual Remarkable People issue. This is, hands down, my favorite issue of the year. We take a handful of people in our local communities, 19 for 2019, and showcase why they are remarkable through the eyes of those closest to them.

Some of those recognized will be well known to you, as they have been champions of our community for many years. Others will be less known, those who work behind the scenes making magic happen, someone whose single act of kindness set them apart or those whose talent was so great it made them rise to the top in places LGBTQ people have not gone before. Whatever their accomplishment, I hope you will join Watermark in celebrating our remarkable people of 2019.

Continue Reading >>

Facebook pressed to drop ads claiming PrEP is unsafe

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
Comments: 0

More than 50 LGBTQ, AIDS and public health organizations released a joint letter on Monday addressed to Facebook Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg urging him to immediately remove “dangerous and misleading” ads currently running on Facebook and Instagram suggesting the HIV prevention drug PrEP is unsafe.

“As organizations attached to this letter – leaders in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) advocacy, public health, and HIV/AIDS prevention – we are urgently reaching out to Facebook and Instagram regarding factually inaccurate advertisements which suggest negative health effects of Truvada PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis),” the letter states.

Continue Reading >>

NIAID Director to Congress: Help us implement plan to end HIV

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
Comments: 0
ABOVE: Dr. Anthony Fauci said that scientific advances have made it possible to end the HIV epidemic in the United States within the next decade if not much sooner. (Washington Blade file photo by Michael K. Lavers)

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told an audience of mostly legislative aides to members of Congress at a Dec. 5 congressional briefing on Capitol Hill that scientific advances have made it possible to end the HIV epidemic in the United States within the next decade if not much sooner.

In an impassioned description of what he calls “implementation science,” Fauci said he and his colleagues at the National Institute of Health, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and other federal, state, and local health agencies are hopeful that a newly launched federal plan to end HIV will be able to overcome socio-economic barriers that have prevented the scientific advances from reaching those who could most benefit from them.

Continue Reading >>

What does Undetectable = Untransmittable mean for U?

By : J.D. Cerna
Comments: 0

Thomas’ libido was especially high that Thursday night. The Orlando resident, who prefers not to use his real name, met a man at his Grand Bohemian Hotel room on the dating application Grindr.

They became sexual rather quickly and Thomas, lost in the delirium of his sex drive, says he allowed the man to penetrate him without a condom. Thomas snapped, “Wait. I’m not on PrEP, pull out.”

Continue Reading >>

Free PrEP program unveiled under Trump’s HIV initiative

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
Comments: 0

In the same week World AIDS Day was recognized, the Trump administration has unveiled a new program to provide free PrEP as part of the initiative to beat the epidemic by 2030.

Secretary of Health & Human Services Alex Azar announced the plan, known as “Ready, Set, PrEP,” in a conference call Tuesday with reporters, calling the initiative “a major step forward in the president’s plan to end the HIV epidemic in America.”

Continue Reading >>

After apology, Azealia Banks doubles down on homophobia

By : John Paul King of the washington blade, courtesy of the national LGBT media association
Comments: 1
ABOVE: Azealia Banks performing at Brixton Academy in London in 2012. (Photo by Tim Boddy, courtesy of Flickr)

In what might be described as a social media whirlwind over the last few days, controversial rapper Azealia Banks has apologized for one homophobic rant, before sending out a new one in a post that teased her retirement from music altogether.

It started in October, when the 28-year-old Banks posted a video on Instagram in which she called out queer singer Frank Ocean a “dumbass n****” for launching a club event called “PrEP+” and implied that gay men use the drug as an excuse for promiscuous behavior.

Continue Reading >>

HIV-prevention drugs PrEP, PEP made available in California without prescription

By : Wire Report
Comments: 0
ABOVE: Single pills (brand name Truvada) containing two antiretroviral drugs, emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxyl fumarate. Truvada is used for pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, a strategy in which healthy people routinely take antiretrovirals to reduce the risk of becoming infected with HIV. (Photo from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), via Flickr)

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) | Pharmacists in California will be able to dispense HIV prevention pills to patients without a doctor’s prescription after Gov. Gavin Newsom signed legislation Oct. 7 that supporters say will greatly reduce the spread of infection.

Advocates of Senate Bill 159 say California is the first state to authorize pre-exposure prophylaxis, also called PrEP, and post-exposure prophylaxis, known as PEP, without prescriptions. California is already considered a leader in AIDS prevention, they say.

Continue Reading >>

2020 hopefuls highlight Medicare for All, PrEP in plans to combat HIV/AIDS

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
Comments: 0
ABOVE, L-R: Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-South Bend, Ind.) Washington Blade file photos by Michael Key.

The reinvigoration of the White House Office of HIV/AIDS, access to generic PrEP and the award of cash gifts for HIV/AIDS innovations as opposed to U.S. patents were just three ideas 2020 hopefuls articulated in responses to a survey conducted by HIV/AIDS advocacy groups.

The candidates expressed those ideas in a survey conducted by AIDS United, which composed its questions in conjunction with a coalition of HIV/AIDS groups and made the responses public Monday.

Continue Reading >>

AIDS group official resigns over group’s acceptance of drug company funds

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
Comments: 0

Kyle Murphy, the communications director for the national AIDS advocacy group AIDS United, released to a listserv of AIDS activists a letter informing AIDS United’s president and CEO and other officials and staff members that he was resigning from his job because the group accepts large sums of money from pharmaceutical companies.

Murphy states in his Aug. 9 letter, a copy of which was obtained by the Washington Blade, that AIDS United is among nearly all of the nation’s AIDS advocacy organizations that for years have worked for the interests of people with HIV/AIDS who accept money from drug companies.

Continue Reading >>

Gays down, straights up in latest Aussie HIV figures

By : Staff Reports from The washington Blade, Courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
Comments: 0
ABOVE: (Scanning electromicrograph by NIAID via Flickr)

KENSINGTON, Australia | HIV infection rates for gay men in Australia are down sharply — 30% in five years, HIV Plus Mag reports, citing the Kirby Institute’s 2018 HIV Surveillance Report.

“It’s the lowest number we’ve seen in 18 years,” said Rebecca Guy, head professor of the institute’s Surveillance, Evaluation and Research program, in a report in The Sydney Morning Herald. Guy attributed the drop to the increase of PrEP use, regular testing and treatment efforts. PrEP is highly effective at making HIV transmission nearly impossible.

Continue Reading >>