On the final day of the 2018 National Ryan White Conference on HIV Care and Treatment we had a conversation with Dr. Laura Cheever about efforts underway to increase hepatitis C testing, treatment, and cure among people with HIV/HCV coinfection in the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program. Dr. Cheever is HRSA's Associate Administrator for the HIV/AIDS Bureau (HAB), which manages the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program (RWHAP).
Dr. Cheever highlighted why we've been hearing so much about hepatitis C lately – for both promising and concerning reasons – and how this impacts people living with HIV and the RWHAP. She also highlighted how HAB is working to support RWHAP grant recipients to address low rates of hepatitis C screening and cure among clients by identifying best models for integrating screening, treatment, and cure into the services offered. That initiative is supported by the Secretary's Minority AIDS Initiative Fund (SMAIF) and is working with several cities and states to pilot models that will be shared with others. She also discussed a newer collaboration underway that engages substance use disorder treatment centers in these efforts, a partnership between HRSA/HAB and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
Over 4,000 participants gathered just outside Washington, DC, for the biennial 2018 National Ryan White Conference on HIV Care and Treatment. Healthcare providers, RWHAP recipients and subrecipients, people living with HIV, and other stakeholders are learning about the programmatic and scientific advances in HIV care, treatment, and prevention; sharing best practices; and highlighting innovative models of care all of which helps continue making progress toward ending the HIV epidemic.