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AIDS Healthcare Foundation's Role in the City of Los Angeles' HIV Testing Initiative
Date:11/30/2007

LOS ANGELES, Nov. 30 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) will provide $100,000 in initial in-kind services toward this landmark public/private partnership-the City of Los Angeles HIV Testing Initiative announced this morning in Los Angeles and New York. AHF's expected contributions include:

-- Staffing and covering the salary of a full-time, citywide coordinator

for the overall HIV testing initiative

-- Spearheading and financing a Public Policy component to support the

Initiative, including a --

- Legislative Platform

- Working with legislators in Sacramento to craft legislation

to require insurers to cover HIV testing (In 2006, the CDC

issued a groundbreaking recommendation that every person age

13 to 64 receive an HIV test a part of their routine medical

care in clinics, doctors' offices and emergency rooms.

However, the recommendation is being poorly implemented, as

insurers balk at covering the costs of such tests, and

providers and hospitals do not want to have to absorb the

costs themselves).

- Regulatory Platform

- Working with DHS, etc. to streamline the regulatory process as

far as actually testing, and the training of HIV pre and post-

test counselors.

-- Fundraising

- Pursuit of government and private grant monies

- Pursuit of private donations to the effort

-- HIV Testing - Conducting a number (to be determined) of the free HIV

tests conducted over the next four years (2008-2011) NOTE: A majority

of this new testing will take place primarily in medical settings-

clinics, ERs, doctors' offices, focusing more on the community-at-

large.

"This innovative public/private partnership to do one-million HIV tests in the City of Los Angeles over the next four years comes at the right time, in the right city with the right partners," said Whitney Engeran, III, Director of AIDS Healthcare Foundation's Public Health Division. "There is a clear and compelling need to dramatically scale up testing nationwide, and Los Angeles is a large enough city for a program such as this to really work, yet small enough that we can be nimble and adapt the program as needed along the way."

AHF is currently the operator of California's largest alternative, community-based HIV testing program, administering over 15,000 free tests per year. AHF provides testing seven-day-a-week at two of its Out of the Closet thrift store locations in Los Angeles (Hollywood & West Hollywood); in the L.A. County Jails system; and on two mobile testing vans, including the AHF Magic Johnson M-Power-U testing van.

About AHF

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the US' largest non-profit HIV/AIDS healthcare provider, currently provides treatment, care and support services to more than 61,000 individuals in 19 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean and Asia. Additional information is available at http://www.aidshealth.org


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SOURCE AIDS Healthcare Foundation
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