Quality and Patient Safety is at the heart of everything we do. To enhance communication with staff and keep you informed, Harris Health is opening its staff huddles for all physicians and extenders to participate. As we refine our huddles over the next 90 days, look for nursing staff on your units to be conducting huddles at the beginning of each shift. You are invited to listen and share your thoughts with the team. All feedback such as safety events or any barriers to patient care raised by anyone will be escalated through manager huddles up to system level leadership. You are encouraged to include safety items such as Red Rules and faculty escalation in your clinical rounds as well. Thank you for your dedicated care to our patients, and we welcome you to our huddles.
UT Researchers aim to modify fragmented health care system to reduce HIV incidence among trans women
HIV prevention services will be combined with access to gender-affirming hormonal therapy and peer health navigation to try to reduce the disproportionate percentage of transgender women who are HIV positive in an innovative study led by researchers at UTHeath and funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIAID Division of AIDS).
“It’s important that we ensure we are meeting the health care needs of transgender women in Houston, as they have some of the highest estimated HIV prevalence of any key population,” said Jordan E. Lake, MD, MSc, the principal investigator for the UTHealth site and an associate professor of infectious diseases at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth. “A combination intervention that combines HIV prevention services and hormonal therapy, which is supported by peer health navigation, could significantly impact the HIV epidemic among this population.”
There are an estimated one-million transgender adults living in the U.S. and an estimated 14% of transgender women are living with HIV. Results from a 2011 survey of transgender persons in the U.S. revealed that 28% of respondents had postponed seeking medical care due to previous experiences of discrimination.
Gender-affirming care and HIV prevention services require a customized approach. When barriers to access to care exist, access to critical and sometimes life-sustaining care may be jeopardized, and patients may be at higher risk of HIV acquisition than if these services were readily available in a gender-affirming environment. Research has also shown a link between access to gender-affirming care and improved mental health outcomes.
The research team, which includes Roberto Arduino, MD, Karen Vigil, MD, and Netanya S. Utay, MD, is enrolling patients at Thomas Street Health Center, will measure the impact of a combination intervention of gender-affirming care and HIV prevention services, including pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and testing and treatment for other sexually transmitted infections, in transgender women who are HIV negative.
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