More than half of the 1.1 million people diagnosed with HIV in America get medication and care through HRSA’s Ryan White Program — and more than 8 out of 10 of those in care — are able to lead normal lives as a result. But some 400,000 people with the virus are outside the HRSA system, and 1 in 7 are unaware they are infected. Making HIV testing an essential part of routine primary health care offered by community health centers could be key to getting the remainder into treatment, the agency’s senior leaders say.
Widely recognized for having helped transform the once deadly illness into a manageable disease, the Ryan White HIV/AIDS and Health Center Programs will be integral to making it preventable, agreed HRSA Acting Administrator Tom Engels and Associate Administrators Laura Cheever (HAB) and Jim Macrae (BPHC).
The trio addressed the annual gathering of HAB’s National Partners on September 17.
“The agency,” Engels pledged, “will play a leading role in helping to diagnose, treat, prevent, and respond to end the HIV epidemic in the United States.”