Summary: This program helps health care providers initiate antiretroviral treatment (ART) for HIV quickly by identifying the most innovative and effective models for providing rapid ART services and giving health departments and providers tools to replicate them.
Opportunity: Nearly four decades after the start of the HIV epidemic, funding under the federal government’s initiative, “Ending the HIV Epidemic: A Plan for America,” represents a historic opportunity for the U.S. to reduce new HIV infections by 90 percent by 2030. This unprecedented opportunity to end the HIV epidemic requires applying and taking to scale what we know works. This includes an urgent need to extend the clear public health benefits of rapid initiation of ART for people diagnosed with HIV. Rapid ART is a health system intervention to facilitate ART initiation as soon as possible after diagnosis by addressing structural barriers—and it has demonstrated the ability to achieve improvements in ART uptake, viral suppression, and retention in care. It is critical to enable swift replication of these approaches more broadly, at the point of care, as part of the nation’s plan to end the HIV epidemic.
Initiative: CAI is leading a collaborative of strategic partners to promote widespread adoption and replication of rapid ART models in Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program settings across the nation. Over the course of three years, the CAI-led team is working to identify and describe the most promising rapid ART programs from across the country; package the most promising programs in an easy-to-use compendium that provides information on the priority population, skills and resources that are required, policy considerations for implementation, and more; develop implementation tools and guides; and support dissemination and replication of rapid ART models through training.
Impact: Ending the HIV epidemic depends in large measure on maximizing the prevention benefits of ART, which has been shown to reduce HIV transmission by as much as 96 percent. Gaps in linking people to ART and other medical care have important public health consequences. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Panel on Antiretroviral Guidelines for Adults and Adolescents recommends initiating ART immediately after HIV diagnosis in order to increase the uptake of ART and linkage to care, decrease the time to viral suppression for individual patients, and improve the rate of virologic suppression among persons with HIV.
Project funder and key partners: This program is funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) HIV/AIDS Bureau (HAB). The team is led by CAI, building on our successful partnerships in the administration of a number of HRSA HAB initiatives, with Mission Analytics Group, the University of California at Los Angeles Department of Family Medicine, and the National Association of County and City Health Officials.
Project contact: Kendall Brooks, MSW, Project Manager: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Disclaimer: This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $1,000,000.00 with 100% percentage funded by HRSA/HHS and $0 amount and 0 percentage funded by non-government source(s). The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA/HHS, or the U.S. Government.