Hiv care – Wankanyakla Self Help Group Wed, 12 Jan 2022 23:09:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Hiv care – Wankanyakla Self Help Group 32 32 FACT FOCUS: Washington state not changing quarantine rules Wed, 12 Jan 2022 21:59:59 +0000

A routine Washington State Board of Health meeting on Wednesday became the subject of a nationwide disinformation campaign this week as social media users, political hopefuls and conservative pundits claimed the meeting would include a vote to force unvaccinated residents into COVID-19 quarantine camps.

A council communications officer said he had been inundated with more than 30,000 public comments, some threatening, linked to the false theory, which misrepresented the council’s planned HIV discussion as a proposed policy change COVID-19.

Demands erupted on social media, where widely circulated posts raised fears of COVID-19 ‘internment camps’, and activists rallied their supporters to attend a protest at Tumwater Board of Health at the meeting online Wednesday.

Even after the council clarified the facts on its website on Friday, the misconception that the state was plotting to hunt down and detain the unvaccinated persisted on social media platforms, on conservative talk shows and throughout the public comment period for Wednesday’s meeting.

Here’s a closer look at the facts.

COMPLAINT: The Washington State Board of Health, at a Jan. 12 public meeting, was scheduled to consider a proposed rule change to allow for the involuntary detention of unvaccinated residents in COVID-19 quarantine camps.

THE FACTS: This false claim completely misrepresents the state Board of Health’s scheduled Wednesday discussion of proposed changes to Washington’s Administrative Code, according to Keith Grellner, who chairs the board.

“What we’re doing on Wednesday with the communicable disease rule really has nothing to do with COVID-19,” Grellner told The Associated Press in a Monday phone interview. “It has everything to do with implementing a change to the HIV code that the legislature asked us to make last year.”

Whenever Washington State legislators pass new bills, state agencies codify those laws by creating rules and regulations in the Washington Administrative Code. The code has had a section on communicable diseases and some others since at least 1988, Grellner said, and it’s changed if lawmakers pass legislation that affects it.

In June 2020, state lawmakers passed a bill “ending the HIV/AIDS statutory exception, reducing HIV-related stigma, decriminalizing HIV exposure, and removing barriers to HIV testing.” according to the State Board of Health’s website. As a result, the council must adjust Washington’s administrative code to ensure its rules comply with the new law.

The section the board proposed to adjust, WAC 246-100, governs the state’s management of communicable diseases and certain other infectious diseases. COVID-19, as a communicable disease, falls into this category, but the changes currently proposed do not alter the state’s management of the disease, Grellner said.

WAC 246-100-040 is a subsection of the code that specifically addresses quarantine and isolation procedures. It’s been around since 2003. Social media users claimed the state Board of Health is proposing to change this section, but the Board of Health and the Office of the Code Reviewer, which governs the Washington Administrative Code, have confirmed to the AP that this section has no proposed changes and has not been modified since its introduction.

The Washington State Senate Republican Caucus also tweeted out a document verifying the false claims.

Grellner said he believes the state has only used its quarantine and isolation procedures when it comes to tuberculosis, and rarely. He added that the procedures do not give health officials “unilateral” power to take someone against their will – those affected would have the right to ask a higher court to be released.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, many states have long had laws in place giving health workers varying degrees of authority to require someone to be quarantined or isolated.

Some social media users have falsely claimed that the state Board of Health meeting on Wednesday will also include a vote to demand the COVID-19 vaccine for school-aged children. That’s not true, according to the state Board of Health. The council said on its website that it would receive a briefing from an advisory group on the subject at the meeting, but it would not take action on it on Wednesday.

Other publications have revived the months-old misleading claim that Washington Gov. Jay Inslee’s office is hiring a “strike team” to run camps where unvaccinated residents could be forced into quarantine.

This assertion stems from a genuine job offer, but not from positions requiring residents to self-quarantine. Instead, the job postings were for a facility in Centralia, Washington, where visitors to the state could safely quarantine themselves if they had no other safe place to go.

Mike Faulk, Inslee’s press secretary, confirmed in an email to the AP that the governor never considered hiring teams to track down unvaccinated people or force them into quarantine.


This is part of AP’s efforts to combat widely shared misinformation, including working with outside companies and organizations to add factual context to misleading content circulating online. Learn more about fact-checking at AP.

]]> LGBTQ + people have experienced higher rates of job loss and health problems during the pandemic Tue, 11 Jan 2022 02:07:00 +0000

COVID-19 has had a disproportionate impact on the employment of minority populations, resulting in higher unemployment rates and health problems, according to a Rutgers study.

The study, published in Research on sexuality and social policy, examined unemployment rates in the United States during the COVID-19 pandemic to identify the specific effects of job loss trends on LGBTQ + populations.

The loss of LGBTQ + jobs has a critical impact on the overall health and well-being of those people who commonly experience marginalization and discrimination. The intersection between financial stability, standard of living and health is an integral equilibrium. Job loss brings additional mental and physical burdens, which can further lead to a public health crisis, as these people lack the housing, financial or health stability required for proper care. “

Perry N. Halkitis, Dean of the Rutgers School of Public Health and Director of the Center for Health, Identity, Behavior & Prevention Studies

Researchers used an internet survey to collect a total sample of 1,090 LGBTQ + study participants from May 2020 to July 2020. Participants self-reported all demographic and employment data, which were then compared to averages. countries to identify significant differences.

They found that LGBTQ + people in the United States experienced higher job loss rates, especially for younger people, non-Hispanic black and non-Hispanic white men, gay cisgender men, less educated people, people who are HIV positive and live with more than two other people.

The results suggest that high job loss rates may be a result of the type of job – those whose work was considered essential as well as those in front-line jobs or in professional positions requiring more education are less likely to face unemployment.

“The survey findings present data that all healthcare workers and policy makers should consider when advocating for minority populations,” Halkitis said. “When individuals face financial hardship, they become vulnerable to deportation and fail to seek appropriate health care, resulting in disruptions in needed care.”

While the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted everyone to some extent, with unemployment dramatically increasing across the workforce, data collected indicates that the LGBTQ + community and other minority populations have been the most affected.

This study also highlights the importance of implementing inclusive data collection methods, as one of the first COVID-19 studies to collect demographic information on sexual orientation and gender identity.

“With the full inclusion of information on sexual orientation and gender identity, we are able to better understand unemployment trends among the LGBTQ + population,” says Kristen D. Krause, instructor at Rutgers School of Public Health and Deputy Director of the Center for Health, Identity, Behavior, and Prevention Studies. “We were able to infer that gay men had higher job loss rates than cisgender women who identify as bisexual or of another orientation. These findings underscore the relevance of including these demographic questions in all national surveys – valid and inclusive data can therefore be used to influence future healthcare decisions.


Journal reference:

Martino, RJ, et al. (2021) Job loss as a result of COVID-19: A national investigation at the onset of COVID-19 in LGBTQ + populations in America. Research on sexuality and social policy.

]]> Despite the pandemic, UNICEF has never lost sight of its commitment to gender equality | D + C Sun, 09 Jan 2022 00:00:00 +0000

2020 has not been a good year for women. They have suffered more than men from the coronavirus crisis and have experienced many setbacks in terms of gender equality. Nonetheless, there were positive developments: in 2020, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) stepped up its advocacy on behalf of women and girls in particular and implemented its largest emergency response. never carried out.

Women have been more impacted than men by the coronavirus crisis and have experienced an increase in unemployment and poverty. There were more early and forced marriages as well as more gender-based violence (GBV). In some countries, cases of domestic violence have increased by 30%. Women also face greater risks when it comes to tackling the pandemic, given that they represent around 70% of healthcare workers globally. These are some of the findings of UNICEF’s annual report on gender equality.

Despite the coronavirus crisis, UNICEF has achieved some success in the health sector. The child welfare organization has advocated for maintaining important health services for mothers during the pandemic. By the end of 2020, 38 countries had planned to scale up maternal and newborn care – seven more countries than in 2019. Seventy-one countries, 14 more than the previous year, have integrated guidance nutrition to antenatal care.

UNICEF has recorded declines in adolescent HIV infection rates and maternal mortality rates around the world. In both areas, according to the report, the numbers are still too high for the organization to meet its own goals.

School education was hit hard by the coronavirus crisis in 2020 (for more information, see also Enakshi Dutta on our D + C / E + Z platform). UNICEF has advocated for equal learning opportunities under Covid-19 restrictions. The child protection organization has also supported gender-sensitive distance education in humanitarian settings such as refugee camps. According to UNICEF, 301 million children have received distance education, of which about half are girls. Nonetheless, the report acknowledges that school closures have raised concerns about the learning outcomes of girls in particular.

In addition, UNICEF has supported governments in their efforts to increase inclusiveness and remove bottlenecks in education policies. In 2020, 53 countries included menstrual health and hygiene (MHS) goals in their strategies for water, sanitation and hygiene in schools. MHH has been implemented in nearly 10,000 schools, and more than 70,500 schools, including those for children with disabilities, have received separate sanitation facilities for boys and girls.

UNICEF has expressed concern over the increase in gender-based violence. It reacted by increasing its assistance and prevention services. UNICEF and its partner organizations are now also offering more of their services online. According to the report, 4.2 million children (including more than 1.25 million girls) who have suffered violence have been affected by health, social action and justice services. In 83 countries, 17.7 million people in emergency situations benefited from interventions to mitigate, prevent or respond to the risks of GBV.

An important aspect of UNICEF’s work is its efforts to transform harmful gender roles and norms. During the pandemic, UNICEF often used online platforms to achieve this goal. In 2020, the organization was able to reach around 2.6 million parents and caregivers in 87 countries. UNICEF also always prioritizes the inclusion of boys and men in its programming.

In order to promote gender equality in the future, UNICEF plans to coordinate more closely with other United Nations organizations and continue intersectoral cooperation. Its objectives are:

  • Strengthening the role of girls and ending child marriage
  • Investing in the health of women and girls in relation to HIV, nutrition, and sexual and reproductive health
  • Promote girls’ education
  • End violence against girls and
  • Promote gender equitable parenting and care.

UNICEF also wants to be better prepared for future emergencies comparable to the Covid-19 pandemic and to include the promotion of gender equality in these measures.

UNICEF, 2021: Gender Equality – Global Annual Results Report 2020:

Sabine balk is a member of the editorial team of D + C Development and Cooperation / E + Z Entwicklung und Zusammenarbeit.
[email protected]

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Healthcare providers can expect to receive a reimbursement of $ 725 from CMS when using the Sentosa (R) SQ HIV-1 genotyping test based on NGS Fri, 07 Jan 2022 14:00:00 +0000

FAIRFIELD, NJ, January 7, 2022 / PRNewswire / – Vela Diagnostics has announced that its Sentosa® The SQ HIV-1 genotyping test is covered for reimbursement by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) from January 2022.

Based on the CMS 2022 Clinical Diagnostic Laboratory Fee Schedule, healthcare providers using the Sentosa® The SQ HIV-1 Genotyping Assay solution with the assigned descriptor for therapeutic diagnostics can expect reimbursement of US $ 725 using the CPT code 0219U for the analysis of HIV * genes.

the Sentosa® The SQ HIV-1 Genotyping Assay is a sample-to-outcome solution that uses Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) on the Sentosa® NGS Workflow, providing automation for extraction, library and model preparation, and bioinformatic analysis with reference to the Stanford University HIV Drug Resistance Database. The test analyzes three key drug targets (protease, reverse transcriptase, and integrase) in a virus genome in a single pass. Mutations in these regions can confer drug resistance and lead to treatment failure. The analysis of the integrase gene is remarkable – this Sentosa® is currently the only FDA-cleared genotyping test with this capability.

Automation could be the key to streamlining genotyping in the clinical setting, which has historically been an arduous and time consuming process. “Our Sentosa® The SQ HIV-1 genotyping assay dramatically reduces technician time compared to traditional methods based on Sanger sequencing, requiring less than 2 hours of manipulation between sample and report generation. By combining the effectiveness of NGS techniques and testing three common drug targets in one go, our solution provides essential information about the drug resistance profile of the virus in an efficient and streamlined workflow, ”said Steve wallace, Executive Vice President.

“There are approximately 1.1 million people living with HIV in the United States and 25.4 million in the WHO African Region, of which approximately 8 million people living with HIV are either undiagnosed or improperly treated. . In the current COVID-19 pandemic, this seropositive population could serve as a large reservoir for the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants, such as the recent Omicron, which could have been incubated in an immunocompromised person, ”said Sam dajani, Chief Executive Officer and Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors.

“We are encouraged that CMS is now reimbursing our Sentosa® SQ HIV-1 genotyping test. This will allow more laboratories to bridge the gap that may have dissuaded them from switching to newer technology that offers higher sensitivity and possibly better clinical outcomes for HIV patients, ”Dajani added. .

In addition to receiving FDA De Novo clearance, the test has received approval from the Thai FDA and the Singapore HSA.

* Where applicable, according to CMS reimbursement rules.

About Vela Diagnostics

Vela Diagnostics is a leading provider of IVD solutions, from sample to outcome on an integrated workflow. VELA’s test solutions have the unique ability to leverage a single system for NGS and PCR testing in infectious disease and oncology.

All Sentosa® the products listed above are from Vela Diagnostics. For more information visit

SOURCE Vela Diagnostics

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To Treat Retirement Homes, State Lawmakers Adopt A Series Of Approaches To Improve Care And Financial Solvency | Local news Wed, 05 Jan 2022 10:00:00 +0000

Massachusetts needed nursing home reform even before the pandemic, people say. Now the stakes are higher.

State Senator Patricia Jehlen, a Democrat from Somerville who co-chairs the Joint Committee on Seniors’ Affairs, said she believes the pandemic has prompted legislative leaders to seek change.

Even so, solving long-term care problems in Berkshire County – and across the state – requires different solutions.

Better wages for workers, better reimbursements for facilities and increased support for alternatives to nursing homes are all on the table, Jehlen said.

'Get me out of here.'  Inside the workforce crisis at Berkshire nursing homes

EAGLE INQUIRIES: Low staff ratios have worsened for more than a decade in the majority of nursing homes in Berkshire County and continue today. Our survey puts faces to those numbers.

“I definitely want to do something, and I think it all ties together,” Jehlen said. “This is the time when we have a chance because of what happened at the start of the pandemic. “

Jehlen and State Representative Ruth Balser, D-Newton, worked with SEIU Local 1199 and the AARP Massachusetts Chapter to introduce a bill that tackles low house numbers head-on nursing, which predated the pandemic.

Their proposal would require facilities in Massachusetts to meet the minimum of 4.1 hours of care per resident per day and 0.75 hours of RN care recommended by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. In addition, the proposal would require facilities to adopt epidemic response plans and policies to prevent social isolation.

And it would launch a “career ladder” program to improve worker retention and quality of care.

Still, Jehlen and Balser say their proposal should accompany additional legislation covering wages, reimbursement rates and other matters.

“It doesn’t just require more hours, which is a necessary reform but not sufficient,” Balser said. “There is a big problem with the salaries of people who work in retirement homes, and there are also working conditions. There are many problems.

The decline of the industry

Jehlen said she hoped two categories of laws could be passed this session. One would expand Massachusetts residents’ access to nursing home alternatives on the long-term care “continuum,” which includes assisted living, home health care and others. options offering greater independence. The other would be for the retirement homes themselves.

Dignity Alliance Massachusetts, a coalition of high-level and disability advocacy groups, has approved 67 bills in the legislature this session, including Jehlen and Balser’s proposal to increase membership, it says. her on her website.

The group representing the state’s retirement homes expressed reservations, however.

Massachusetts Senior Care Association president Tara Gregorio warned at a hearing in June that proposals to the Seniors’ Affairs Committee would create “unfunded mandates,” although she added that senior executives industry “agree on the concept” with the reforms.

Gregorio estimates that Jehlen and Balser’s proposal to increase staff would cost $ 170 million a year, she said in an email to The Eagle.

“Nursing facilities simply cannot afford these increases under the state’s current reimbursement formula,” said Gregorio, adding that staff costs for temporary nursing agencies have increased. “We continue to believe that any endowment mandate must be accompanied by a legal provision that requires recognition of the new costs by MassHealth.”

Nursing home owners blame Medicaid shortages for staffing difficulties.  Critics say they're cheap for profit

The Seniors Affairs Committee is evaluating the association’s testimony as well as the support the Dignity Alliance and its member organizations have given to the bill, said State Representative Thomas Stanley, D-Saugus, who co-chairs the committee with Jehlen.

“That’s the committee’s job, and that’s what we’re doing right now,” Stanley said. “One side says one thing, another side says another. And it’s our job to dig into the arguments and find out what’s right and what can be changed to make the system work better.

The Massachusetts Senior Care Association’s top priority is “building a stable and skilled workforce,” said Gregorio, identifying two bills as “critically needed.” These proposals are referred to the Joint Committee on Health Care Financing, which heard testimony on them in September.

While 70% of nursing home residents are paid by MassHealth, the state’s Medicaid program provides reimbursements of less than $ 30 per day to cover the cost of care for each resident, Gregorio said.

A “quality nursing home jobs initiative” would require MassHealth to fund a “living wage supplement” for healthcare workers, and another bill seeks to stabilize the finances of nursing homes.

Former state senator Richard Moore, who chairs the Alliance for Dignity, said the coalition had considered these proposals and refused to support them because of the potential for “cost shifting” that would increase operator profits. facilities.

“If MassHealth picked up the cost, will the savings flow through as a profit to the owners?” Moore asked. “We’ve worked with SEIU members who represent some of the nursing home workers, and I think they tend to think more in the interests of workers than management.”

The virus has spread heavily in nursing homes in Mass.  (copy)

Christopher Potash and his friend, Noah McDonald, chat with Potash’s mother, Gertrude, 84, during a 20-minute visit in July 2020 to the Greylock Extended Care Facility in Pittsfield.

Continuum of long-term care

Even before the pandemic, people in Massachusetts were showing a greater interest in alternatives to nursing homes.

More and more seniors are choosing to “age in the community” or “age in place” rather than seeking institutional care in nursing homes, the Executive Office of Health and Social Services reported in 2019 One in six nursing homes in the state, he found, had a low occupancy rate, defined as filling less than 80 percent of available beds.

Still, some regulations and restrictions prevent people who may not need nursing care from accessing more independent alternatives, Jehlen said.

“There are people in nursing homes who don’t need to be there if we’re strengthening the rest of the continuum,” she said. “In order to pay adequate rates for people who need this care, we need to strengthen the cheapest and least restrictive services. “

Stanley worked on a commission that made recommendations to establish a statewide licensing process for home health care providers. Licensing more home care providers can provide quality assurance for families, as well as ‘resizing’ the nursing home industry so that it can be financially viable, he said. declared.

“We need to reduce excess bed capacity in the system and put money into the direct care workforce and expanding community services,” Stanley said. “I think it’s incredibly frustrating for consumers to find the right and appropriate care for their loved ones when the time comes, and we want to make sure home care agencies are licensed and trained properly and that consumers know what is needed. ‘they get.”

Jehlen has introduced a bill to improve reimbursements for home health care services, but regulation can also be a barrier.

Many people living with HIV or AIDS, for example, have to enter nursing homes if they are not old enough to qualify for home care, Jehlen said. While most residents must be 60 years of age or older to be eligible for home care – people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease are eligible if they are under 60 – a Jehlen bill would make home care accessible to anyone diagnosed with HIV or AIDS, regardless of their age.

Another Jehlen bill would allow assisted living staff to provide “common sense health services,” such as giving injections and applying ointments or drops. Some families have had to go to assisted living facilities to administer insulin injections themselves because staff were not authorized to do so, Jehlen said. Assisted living facilities have a temporary authorization to provide these services, but the authorization is due to expire on February 1.

Jehlen said she expects the complexity of the issues facing long-term care facilities will require continued attention from lawmakers beyond this session.

“It’s rare that we solve all the problems at once,” she said.

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The pandemic has brought about seismic changes. They changed with it. Mon, 03 Jan 2022 08:00:10 +0000

When the pandemic began, Mark Finazzo was working at a brewery in Columbus, Ohio, a job he lost due to lockdowns that plunged him, like many Americans, into terrifying months of isolation, anxiety and helplessness, with nothing more to do than watch the rage of the coronavirus through the television news.

Today, Mr. Finazzo, 35, is in his first semester at Ohio State University. He graduated with his second bachelor’s degree, this one in microbiology, in hopes of becoming a research scientist – like the people who strive to create a vaccine that he watched and read while sitting on his couch in the darkest early days of the pandemic.

“When I saw pictures of hospital tents erected in Central Park, it was like ‘Wow life is fragile and precious,'” Mr Finazzo said, referring to the field hospitals in the city of New York gathered in the spring of 2020. “” I should probably do something to help besides brewing a delicious poison that we love to drink. “

The toll of the virus cannot be overstated: it has stolen more than 800,000 American lives and millions around the world. Efforts to thwart it have swept away livelihoods, altered childhood, and left lasting emotional scars. At the start of a new year of Covid-19 among us, with its latest variant rising, there is a familiar hunch for many.