From:                              Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force []

Sent:                               Friday, February 06, 2015 10:14 AM

To:                                   Jason Herring

Subject:                          Success! ...but the fight continues



PATF logo 2 color  




        Issue 46/
February 2015







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Dear Jason, 

Welcome to
e-Perspectives, a monthly e-newsletter that highlights current and upcoming Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force events, accomplishments and programs, as well as national and international HIV/AIDS information. 

Have questions or comments about
e-Perspectives? Please contact editor Jason Herring at    



PATF to continue successful Lost-to-Care Program  




The numbers are in and Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force's Lost-to-Care Program was a resounding success.  


In the past few years, thanks to a couple landmark studies, the focus of HIV prevention has shifted to HIV treatment. We know that out of the people who are diagnosed with HIV, only around 25% of them stay in treatment long enough so that the amount of virus in their body becomes so low it is considered undetectable or suppressed. We also know that an HIV-positive person who has the virus suppressed is extremely less likely to spread the virus to others.


This convergence of HIV treatment and prevention put the spotlight on how well we are engaging those living with the virus in the continuum of services: testing, care, and effective treatment. Treatment as prevention allows us focus on identifying why people stop treatment and what we can do to keep them receiving the medical care needed to suppress their HIV. PATF's commitment to finding new infections and linking them to care made us an ideal candidate to participate in the regional Lost-to-Care Program.

PATF's Lost-to-Care Program identified and reached approximately 100 individuals who were not currently participating in treatment for their HIV infection.  Nearly all participants who were contacted were assisted with attending one or more medical appointment as well as receiving extensive help with any barriers to care such as gaining insurance coverage and coordinating transportation. 61% of participants were African-American, 50% were men who sex with men (MSM), and 4% identified as transgender.  


The majority of participants who attended three or more medical appointments while in the program were able to achieve undetectable viral loads.


With the success of the program, and funding for the program ending in 2014, PATF has made continuing this program its top priority. Our Lost-to-Care Program has expanded from one staff member to three.  


PATF will continue finding those infected with HIV in our communities and getting them the care they need to be healthier, happier, and less likely to spread the virus to others.

For more information, email Aaron Arnold at




PATF presents its signature fundraising event 





Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force's 29th Annual Benefit will take place Thursday, March 26 at J. Verno Studios in Pittsburgh's South Side. Co-chaired by sisters Barbara Richey Chait (Giant Eagle) and Clare Meehan (Alphagraphics), the event features an enhanced VIP experience with Emmy-nominated Chef Bob Sendall of All in Good Taste Productions with Chef Chris Cunningham at 6:00PM followed by Elite Show Band at 7:30PM and the presentation of PATF's signature Kerry Stoner Award to Stuart Fisk with Allegheny Health Network's Positive Health Clinic.


Tickets for the benefit are $125 and tickets for the VIP reception, including admission to the Annual Benefit, are $325. Tickets can be purchased at or by calling Emma McAfee at 412-345-0593. 


Emmy-nominated Chef Bob Sendall with Chef Chris Cunningham will be entertaining and satisfying guests with a live cooking demonstration featuring some of Bob's most delicious creations, cooked up exclusively for our VIP guests. Elite Show Band will kick off the evening at 7:30 with great music while guests enjoy custom cocktails and delicious hors d'oeuvres from All in Good Taste Productions.  


The evening will also feature the presentation of PATF's signature award, the Kerry Stoner Award, to Stuart Fisk for his dedication to our mission over the years.


Approximately 400 guests are expected to attend this special evening. Last year was the largest and most successful benefit in PATF's 30-year history and we look forward to an equally dazzling night of food, friends, and fun!


The event will be tastefully decorated by Thomas G. Bedger and Jeffrey C. Pierce of Toadflax in Shadyside.


Early sponsors include our premier sponsor Giant Eagle, Inc., Allegheny Health Network, Pittsburgh Magazine, Broadway Cares Equity Fights AIDS, PNC Bank, First Niagara Bank, and Quest Diagnostics.


Proceeds benefit the Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force, the region's oldest and largest AIDS service organization.

If you are unable to attend the event, but would like to support the mission of PATF, you can make a tax deductible donation online anytime!




Help us welcome new staff!

Originally from Erie, PA, Dalen Hooks received his associate degree in business and hospitality management from the Pittsburgh Technical Institute. Dalen joins our team as HIV Prevention Specialist and peer mentor for our #standOUTpgh campaign.

Katie Florack, new to the Pittsburgh area, brings with her years of experience working with homeless populations in Seattle, WA and St. Louis, MO.  Katie grew up in the Chicago suburbs and graduated from the University of Notre Dame. She began her career in social services while earning her master's degree in social work from Washington University in St. Louis. There, Katie worked at Covenant House, a homeless shelter for youth.  She then spent two years in Seattle housing women with severe mental illness .  She is very excited to join the PATF team as Housing / Medical Case Manager.


Daniel Pipkin moved to Pittsburgh in 2009 from Sharon, PA. Daniel received his Nurses Aide license from the Pittsburgh Job Corps' Health Occupations Program and attended the Community College of Allegheny County for early childhood education. Daniel is happy to join us part-time as Peer Mentor for our #standOUTpgh campaign!

Welcome to the family!




HIV in the News: 


New HIV cases in 2014 breach 6,000 mark



Despite a government campaign against human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), the Department of Health (DOH) said the new cases of the dreaded disease in 2014 soared to 6,011.

This number is significantly higher compared with the 4,814 new cases recorded in 2013 and 3,338 cases in 2012.



Read rest of story here 


Study Finds HIV Drugs Priced Out of Reach 


Drugs to treat HIV and AIDS are being priced out of reach for many patients enrolled in insurance plans through the new health care exchanges, despite warnings that such practices are illegal under the Obama administration's health care law, according to a new analysis by Harvard researchers. 




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