ABOUT POSITIVE SPIN
In his 2013 Executive Order establishing the HIV Care Continuum Initiative, President Obama called upon Federal agencies implementing the National HIV/AIDS Strategy to prioritize addressing the HIV care continuum, including by accelerating efforts to increase HIV testing, services, and treatment along the continuum. In 2013, AIDS.gov developed two videos to help educate Americans about the continuum of HIV care: The HIV Care Continuum Initiative of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy and HIV Continuum of Care with Dr. Grant Colfax.
Encouraged by the White House to update those videos, AIDS.gov developed Positive Spin to continue to raise awareness and understanding of the HIV care continuum. Given the disproportionate impact of HIV on young Black gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men (MSM) and our ongoing commitment to using new media tools in HIV efforts, we developed this tool to feature the personal stories of Black MSM who have successfully navigated the continuum from initial diagnosis to achieving viral suppression as a way to explain what the HIV care continuum is and demonstrate its importance.
Positive Spin uses personal storytelling videos because we know the power of compelling personal stories to communicate important messages across communities and populations, and to address the misconceptions, stigma, and discrimination that continue to present significant barriers to accessing HIV testing and treatment. The stories of the men featured in this project represent their own experiences and are not intended to be inclusive—HIV affects each individual differently and everyone’s story is unique. We hope to grow this project with additional stories of other individuals living with HIV who have achieved the goal of full viral suppression. If you have a story to share or a perspective you would like to see included, please contact us at: [email protected].
What Is The HIV Care Continuum?
The HIV care continuum describes the series of steps a person with HIV takes from initial diagnosis through their successful treatment with HIV medications. The stages along the continuum are: being HIV tested, being linked to care, starting HIV treatment (getting on antiretroviral therapy), staying engaged in HIV care, and achieving the goal of viral suppression, meaning the amount of HIV in the body is very low or undetectable. By achieving viral suppression, people with HIV can stay healthy, live longer, and significantly reduce their chances of passing HIV to others. Only 30% of people living with HIV in the U.S. make it all of the way through the HIV care continuum to achieve that goal.
Read more at https://positivespin.hiv.gov