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New Phone App to Facilitate HIV Screening, Counseling, and Linkage to Care
Date:4/18/2013

NEW YORK, April 18, 2013 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, in collaboration with the Institute for Johns Hopkins Nursing, the American Academy of HIV Medicine (AAHIVM), and DKBmed, LLC, has announced the creation of an application (app) that brings essential features of the SCALE HIV™ program to iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch devices.  The app can be found at  www.dkbmed.com/scale. The goal of the app is to enhance the ability of healthcare professionals to screen their patients with HIV infection and to link those with positive test results to appropriate counseling and treatment. A key component of the app is direct access to the AAHIVM ReferralLink database.

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The new SCALE HIV app provides key information, including current CDC recommendations, guidance for counseling HIV-positive patients/partner notification, and how to access expert care. In addition to providing information on screening patients and counseling, the app also includes access to the AAHIVM ReferalLink Database, an essential tool for all clinicians.

Available for the first time on a mobile platform, the AAHIVM ReferalLink Database enables clinicians to find local HIV care providers simply by inputting a zip code and other customizable fields, such as provider expertise, services, and payment types. (This search tool can also be viewed at aahivm.org.)

"ReferralLinkconnects healthcare professionals with credentialed HIV care providers all over the country," said James M. Friedman , MD, Executive Director of the AAHIVM Corporate Scientific Advisory Board. "Making this feature available to more clinicians through an iPhone/Pod/Pad-enabled app will make it even easier for them to connect their patients with high-quality care quickly and efficiently. The app also enables clinicians to print or email referral information for their patients, helping to ensure patients will seek the treatment they need."

SCALE (Screening – Counseling – Linkage – Education) HIV was launched in 2011 to address key practice and knowledge gaps in HIV screening, counseling, linkage to care, and adherence to clinical guidelines among primary care clinicians. The program consists of a series of live symposia, webcasts and podcasts, and a Virtual Clinic where patients can be followed online (www.scalehiv.org).

"It is important to find effective and efficient ways to educate clinicians about HIV screening guidelines and to help them connect their patients to appropriate care," said Dean Beals , President and CEO of DKBmed, LLC. "Tools such as the SCALE HIV app go a long way to achieve those goals. The sooner we can start HIV treatment in the course of the infection, the better a patient's outcome is likely to be."

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend routine HIV testing for everyone between the ages of 13 and 64, but many healthcare professionals lack the tools to follow these guidelines. The CDC recently reports that youths ages 13 – 24 account for 25 percent of new HIV cases, but fewer than a third of this age group has been tested for the virus. Clinician inexperience or lack of training also means that many HIV-positive patients are not counseled effectively, if at all. Moreover, linkage to care for HIV-positive individuals is not optimal, especially among minorities and women.

SCALE HIV is supported by an educational grant from Bristol-Myers Squibb.

About DKBmed

DKBmed is an integrated, non-accredited, continuing medical education company operated by a team of experienced medical education. The goal of DKBmed is to provide health care professionals with effective medical education that closes identified knowledge/practice gaps to ensure optimal patient care.

Working with accredited providers, DKBmed develops a range of innovative educational programs and specializes in bringing new adult learning methodologies to the CME landscape. DKBmed was an early adopter of utilizing case scenarios with recorded and live actors, 3D animation, webcasts, podcasts, e-mail, and mobile phone applications for clinicians and patients. These forward-thinking approaches enable users to learn using the latest state-of-the-art techniques and to access educational programs in a manner that is most convenient and appropriate for them.

DKBmed's programs are accessible through the company's web site (www.dkbmed.com). They reach more than 30,000 clinicians specializing in a variety of areas, including neonatology, cystic fibrosis, infectious disease, dermatology, macular degeneration, rheumatoid arthritis, pulmonary disease, nephrology, hematology, transplantation, multiple sclerosis, gout, ulcerative colitis, depression, and pain management.

About the American Academy of HIV Medicine (AAHIVM)

The American Academy of HIV Medicine is a professional organization that supports the HIV practitioner and promotes accessible, quality care for all Americans living with HIV disease.  Our membership of HIV practitioners and credentialed providers give direct care to more than three-fourths of HIV patients in the US.

Media Contact: Dean Beals DKBmed, 646-336-6495, dbeals@dkbmed.com

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