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DESIGNATHON: Ending the HIV Epidemic Open Knowledge Webinar

Thursday, June 24, 2021
6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
NYU-CUNY Prevention Research Center (PRC)
Firefly Innovations

The Open Knowledge Webinar is the kick-off event for the DESIGNATHON: Ending the HIV Epidemic featuring expert panelists covering the gaps and opportunities in the field of HIV prevention. The Designathon is a 1-day highly interactive event of bringing together change makers focused addressing this challenge on September 18th, 2021. Website and application details are releasing on June 14th, 2021.

To end the HIV epidemic in the US among men who have sex with men, it is critical to increase the uptake of consistent HIV testing and PrEP, particularly for men of color who are disproportionately affected by HIV/AIDS in the United States. PrEP has proven to be so effective that it can lower chances of getting HIV from sex by more than 90% and its use has increased drastically since 2014. However, barriers such as HIV stigma and homophobia have stubbornly remained as blockades to access and has contributed to lower uptake among Black and Hispanic MSM, leading to poorer health outcomes.

To address this challenge, a partnership-led effort between academic institutions and community-based organizations is hosting an Open Knowledge Webinar that features expert researchers, healthcare providers, and community advocates who are currently working in the field of HIV treatment and prevention.

Panel guests will discuss:

  • PEP/PrEP eligibility and disparities in PrEP uptake
  • Patient-provider communication around PrEP and other biomedical HIV prevention
  • Messaging and media campaigns around HIV-related services
  • Stigma and medical system mistrust

Through the Open Knowledge Webinar, we aim to:

1) Establish current evidence base of best practices in the health of men who have sex with men, particularly in supporting healthcare providers to communicate with men of color about issues related to biomedical HIV prevention, such as PEP and PrEP.

2) Develop a network of multidisciplinary stakeholders, such as healthcare providers, researchers, and community entrepreneurs, who are committed to addressing the challenge of overcoming stigma to facilitate PrEP uptake.

3) Use the knowledge and network accumulated among a community of experts and advocates to launch a DESIGNATHON aimed to source, generate, and refine innovative communication-based solutions to support healthcare providers to foster PrEP uptake among men who have sex with men of color.

If you have ideas and would like to connect to a diverse network of committed individuals and organizations that address this public health challenge, join this event to learn more about the DESIGNATHON, a fast-paced, interactive day of meeting new people and working collaboratively on big ideas.

Panel Guests:

Dr. Viraj Patel
Viraj Patel, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine, is a clinician-investigator in the Division of General Internal Medicine and on faculty in the Primary Care/Social Internal Medicine residency program. His research centers around innovative community engaged approaches to HIV prevention with sexual minority men and gender minority communities in the U.S., India, and Rwanda. His current research focuses on developing and testing technology based behavioral interventions (e.g., social media and mobile apps) to reach and engage underserved communities, as well as leveraging online social networks to improve health outcomes. He also is focused on implementation and scale-up of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for preventing HIV in clinical and community settings.

Dr. Christian Grov
Dr. Christian Grov is chair of the Department of Community Health and Social Sciences at the City University of New York (CUNY) Graduate School of Public Health & Health Policy. His research centers on the sexual health of sexual minority individuals, particularly gay and bisexual men. His work has explored substance use, sexual compulsivity, venues where individuals meet sex partners, and Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP). His studies have been funded by both the NIH and CDC.He has (co)authored more than 175 publications including the book In the Company of Men: Inside the Lives of Male Prostitutes (Praeger), and co-edited The Routledge Handbook of Male Sex Work, Culture, and Society.

David W. Matthews
David Matthews , MBA, is a Research Associate at the CUNY School of Medicine with 20 years of management experience, working within social service and non-profit organizations. David has worked in the areas of community public health and social justice work, with a focus on HIV/AIDS prevention and care; LGBTQ challenges and barriers; adolescent, young adult, and adult populations; homelessness; active drug use and abuse; mental illness; and risk/Harm Reduction.

Pedro Botti Carneiro
Pedro, MPH, is a doctoral student in Community Health and Health Policy at the CUNY School of Public Health. He serves as the Clinical Data Scientist at the National Association of Community Health Centers. His work focuses on understanding the determinants of uptake and adhrence to HIV biomedical prevention. In 2016. Pedro was awarded the Joep Lange and Jacqueline van Tongeren Prize for young investigators by the International AIDS Society for his work on implementation research and PrEP.

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