County Makes Fighting HIV/AIDS A Top Priority
On World Aids Day in 2014, we heard some alarming statistics. Georgia ranks second among states for rates of new HIV cases. Twenty-five percent of those infected live here in Fulton County. While cases were going down in cities like San Francisco and Washington, DC, our numbers continued to rise.
The stats were a wake up call for county leaders. We formed an HIV/AIDS Task Force composed of individuals who not only have the expertise, but also the passion to solve the AIDS crisis.
In March, the county sponsored a groundbreaking, day-long strategy session: HIV/AIDS – Connecting the Dots. It brought together a cross-section of people, including the nation’s Director of AIDS policy who called the county’s efforts to fight the epidemic “revolutionary.”
“We believe the time is now for Fulton County to set an example for others to follow,” said Chairman John Eaves. “We are making a bold commitment to end AIDS in Fulton County.”
The county has outlined ambitious goals for 2016:
- Increase coordination and collaboration among those working on prevention, care and treatment
- Improve access to care and improve health outcomes for people living with HIV
- Expand availability of PrEP, a pill taken daily that can prevent high-risk individuals from contracting HIV
- Offer free HIV/AIDS screening at clinics across the county (opt-out testing)
The AIDS/HIV crisis poses many challenges but it is a priority of my office and we have made a long-term commitment and impact change.
For more information on the HIV / AIDS Fulton County Task Force, click the link below.