12 Cities Project Evaluation Highlights Impacts on Coordination of HIV/AIDS Services
Coordinated by the HHS Office of the HIV/AIDS and Infectious Disease Policy (OHAIDP), and building upon the platform established by the CDC ECHPP program, the 12 Cities Project engaged additional federal partners including the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), National Institutes of Health (NIH), Indian Health Services (IHS), and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). At its core, the purpose of the 12 Cities Project was to address the fourth goal of the NHAS to “achieve a more coordinated national response to the HIV epidemic in the United States.” Although the 12 Cities Project did not have dedicated funding, federal partners worked to leverage existing resources—including informational resources—to support better coordination and collaboration across federally-funded HIV programs at the local level in each of the 12 jurisdictions.
A qualitative evaluation, funded by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health and conducted by John Snow, Inc., set out to: (1) assess whether federal efforts had produced any impact on coordination, collaboration, and integration (CCI) at the local level, and (2) document whether local jurisdictions had undertaken any CCI efforts of their own. Information was gathered through interviews with 27 federal partners representing five agencies as well as key stakeholder interviews in each of the participating jurisdictions. Those interviews provided opportunities to gather feedback from nearly 300 people including program administrators, service providers, community leaders, and clients/consumers. The resulting findings are presented in a new evaluation report (PDF 2.6 MB).
As we shared recently at the October 25-26 PACHA meeting, among the positive findings from the evaluation were:
- The 12 Cities Project has reinforced, locally, the importance of integrating HIV prevention and care
- Localities perceive improved communication across federal funders
- New federal and local partners have been “brought to the table” in the jurisdictions for more coordinated conversations
- There is an increased emphasis on using data to drive decision-making
- Need for better description of federal HIV/AIDS resources, by jurisdiction
- Collaboration is resource intensive and requires ongoing support
- Legislative and other barriers impede some forms of program integration (and resource sharing)
- Cross-agency differences in data collection elements and processes pose barriers to joint prevention/care planning
- Recurrent concerns about the roles of community-based and other non-governmental organizations in the new HIV prevention paradigm which emphasizes linkage to and retention in HIV care
To learn more, view a video about the 12 Cities Project and read our blog posts about it. We welcome your thoughts and ideas about CCI in your jurisdiction and across the nation. Share your successes, challenges or suggestions in the Comments section below.