With almost 4 decades providing HIV prevention and support services and 23 years providing HIV care in the counties of Miami-Dade and Broward, Care Resource is South Florida’s oldest HIV/AIDS community-based organization and an FQHC since 2009.
Project sTrenGth (Status-neutral Transgender-serving Organizations Ending Together HIV), a collaborative between Care Resource (TG clinic) and various TG CBOs, will offer a community-to-clinic, status neutral, HIV prevention and care service model to the priority population of transgender (TG) persons, in particular transgender women (TGW), living in the area of Miami-Dade and Broward which, according to CDC, is number 1 in terms of HIV infection rates in the nation. While HIV incidence data about TG persons are hard to come by, it’s estimated, according to the 2018 Human Rights Report, Living at Risk: Transgender Women, HIV, and Human Rights in South Florida, that at least 23% of all TG persons may be living with HIV. Furthermore, TG persons are identified by the state as a “key population” to receive HIV services. Therefore, informed by the HIV National Strategic Plan, 2021-2025 (HIV Plan) and in support of the goals of the Ending the HIV Epidemic: A Plan for America (EHE), Project sTrenGth will establish a safe, welcoming, culturally and linguistically appropriate trans medical home that integrates in a one-stop-shop HIV prevention and care, as well as transgender-driven health services, with a focus on access to hormone replacement therapy and transition-related care. The end goals for this project and TG persons are to: a) Prevent new HIV infections; b) Improve HIV-related outcomes for TG persons); c) Reduce HIV-related disparities and health inequities among TG persons; and d) Improve transgender-focused health care services. This will be achieved through the following strategies, activities, and outcomes (to be met or exceeded after Year I):
1) Provide integrated HIV testing, status-neutral HIV prevention and care, and comprehensive TG health services to TG persons through TG CBO and clinic collaboratives: a) Increased HIV testing among TG persons; b) Increased HIV diagnoses among TG persons who are unaware of their HIV status; c) Increased access to STI, Hepatitis treatment and vaccination; d) Increased PrEP initiation by PrEP-eligible TG persons; e) Increased nPEP initiation by nPEP-eligible TG persons; f) Increased adherence to PrEP by TG persons; g) Increased persistence with PrEP by TG persons; h) Increased rapid ART initiation by TG persons diagnosed with HIV; i) Increased linkage to HIV care by TG persons diagnosed with HIV; j) Increased retention in HIV care by TG persons diagnosed with HIV; k) Increased capacity of TG Clinic and TG CBO to provide or link TG persons in HIV prevention and care, as well as comprehensive TG health services; l) Increased viral suppression among TG persons diagnosed with HIV. 2) Support use of mental health and substance use disorder services and other essential support services by TG persons to address social determinants of health: m) Increased receipt/linkage by TG persons of substance use services and other essential support services. 3) Provide services that are culturally and linguistically responsive for TG persons and for Black and Hispanic persons: n) Increased cultural and linguistic responsiveness for TG persons in TG CBOs and TG clinic. 4) Participate in a national learning collaborative for recipients to share best practices and lessons learned for community-to-clinic, status-neutral, comprehensive TG health services: o) Increased understanding of best practices and lessons learned by TG providers about community-to-clinic, status-neutral, and comprehensive TG health care services.
Care Resource requests $500,000 a year to implement Project sTrenGth in the counties of Miami-Dade and Broward, FL while serving at least 375 TG persons in year 1 and at least 1,500 TG individuals throughout the 4-year period of performance.