Miami, U.S.A. — The Black Treatment Advocates Network (BTAN) and the Black AIDS Institute are sponsoring HIV Post-Conference Updates in Ft. Lauderdale on August 6 and Miami on August 7 to bring new information from the recent International AIDS Conference (AIDS2012) to South Florida communities. BTAN delegates recently attended AIDS2012 in Washington, D.C., where they learned about the latest HIV research, testing and treatment to implement in their local communities.
In Miami, BTAN will launch the Post-Conference Update at CECOSIDA, 521 NE 81 ST, Miami, FL, 33321. In both Miami and Ft. Lauderdale, BTAN will hold a reception from 5:30 to 9 pm, which will include a screening of the Frontline documentary, ‘End Game’, followed by a panel discussion about the international conference, the current state of AIDS in each city, and how to end the AIDS epidemic in these communities.
The Fort Lauderdale Post-Conference Update will take place from 5:30 to 9 pm at New Mount Olive Ministry Center, 401 NW 9th Ave., Fort Lauderdale, FL 33311. In addition, there will be a science and treatment training session with the Miami-Dade Health Department on August 8.
“The most important thing we can do now is to act: To take what we learned at the International AIDS Conference back into our communities,” said Phill Wilson, President and CEO of the Black AIDS Institute. “Words are not enough now; we are beyond the meetings and the conversations – we can end AIDS in South Florida; if we act decisively, boldly and locally.”
BTAN, a network of Black Advocates committed to bringing the latest HIV/AIDS science to Black communities, is holding the Post-Conference Updates in partnership with the South Beach AIDS Project (SoBAP), Empower “U” and other local AIDS Service Organizations in South Florida, and supported by the Miami-Dade and Broward County Health Departments. They are working together to underscore the urgency of access to the newest testing methods and treatments, and to build resources and infrastructure in local healthcare facilities.
“Being at the AIDS2012 Conference was a momentous occasion and being able to bring it back to our neighborhood – one of the most impacted communities in the country – is essential, ” said Charles Martin, Executive Director of South Beach AIDS Project. “I am proud to work with the Black AIDS Institute to make this happen.”
Approximately 125,000 people, roughly 11.7% of the national total, currently live with HIV infection in Florida, which ranked number one among states in the number of cases of HIV infection reported in 2010, according to the Florida Department of Health Annual Report for 2011.
In 2011, Miami-Dade County reported the highest number of HIV cases and the greatest number of new AIDS cases in the entire state of Florida. Broward County (which includes Fort Lauderdale) currently ranks number two in the nation for cases of people infected by HIV, logging the second highest number of new AIDS cases per capita in the United States.
Image Courtesy of Elvert Barnes