Women's health milestones since 2001 in the fight against HIV and AIDS

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2006: The first annual National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day in the United States was observed.

2012: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) launched Take Charge. Take the Test.™, a national social marketing campaign that focuses on increasing HIV testing and decreasing HIV infections among heterosexual African-American women ages 18 to 34.

2013: AIDS Alliance for Women, Infants, Children, Youth & Families worked with the Office on Women's Health and Medicare Part D providers to share best practices in delivering HIV primary and specialty medical care and supportive services to women over 50 living with HIV and AIDS.

2014: Under the Affordable Care Act, new health plans began offering HIV screenings without cost sharing.

2014: The U.S. Public Health Service released the first comprehensive clinical practice guidelines for pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP).

2015: CDC released the National HIV Prevention Progress Report (PDF, 2.3MB), which examines progress toward 2015 goals for 15 indicators, adding additional data available for 2010-2014. The report states that the percentage of people with undiagnosed HIV infection remains highest among those who are under 35 years of age, MSM, and heterosexual males and females.

2016: In June, the Office on Women's Health and the Office of HIV/AIDS and Infectious Disease Policy launched the HIV Prevention Toolkit: A Gender-Responsive Approach.


2006–present: National AIDS Education and Training Center at Howard University College of Medicine educated and trained more than 43,000 clinicians to provide culturally competent HIV and AIDS care.

2006: On July 12, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Atripla as the first one-pill-a-day HIV medicine.

2009: On October 6, the FDA and the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) approved the 100th antiretroviral drug.

2010: The "Berlin patient"— a man living with HIV who underwent a transplant involving HIV-resistant stem cells in 2007 for the treatment of leukemia—was classified as cured of his HIV.

2013: On October 24, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Population Affairs (OPA) and the Family Violence Prevention and Services Center hosted a webinar on the intersection of HIV/AIDS and intimate partner violence in the family planning setting.

2014–present: OPA is working on the development of a curriculum on preconception care for HIV-positive women.

2016: In December, the AIDS United Retention in Care (RiC) initiative, a three-year partnership launched by AIDS United and the M·A·C AIDS Fund, to address key barriers to HIV care, announced their efforts improved on national retention in HIV care benchmarks by 25 percent, viral suppression by 25 percent over national averages, and saved up to $6.75 for every dollar spent. The initiative sheds new light on the role of stigma, discrimination, and social determinants of health on retention in care and provides several approaches that could dramatically improve the way HIV care is delivered.

Policy, research, and funding

2001–present: (OPA) funded Title X for family planning and HIV testing and prevention education.

2006: The first round of funding for (PEPFAR) began.

2006: On December 19, the Ryan White CARE Act was renamed the Ryan White Treatment Modernization Act of 2006.

2007: National AIDS Education and Training Center at Howard University College of Medicine researched and developed resources that focused on providing culturally competent, high-quality HIV care to American Indian/Alaska Native women and black women in urban communities. The two groups also developed an effective HIV/AIDS response for women and girls in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

2008: Congress reauthorized PEPFAR for five years, while also voting to end the HIV travel and immigration ban..

2009: To increase the number of veterans getting HIV tests, the Department of Veterans Affairs dropped the written consent requirement (verbal consent is still required).

2009: The Global Health Initiative, an integrated approach to the government's activities in fighting communicable diseases and supporting international health advances, was launched.

2009: Congress eliminated the longstanding ban on the use of federal funds for needle exchange programs.

2010: On January 4, the U.S. government officially lifted the HIV travel and immigration ban.

2010: 2010: On March 23, Public Law 111–148, The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, became a law, which expanded affordable health insurance coverage for millions of Americans, including thousands living with HIV.

2010: On July 15, the White House released the first comprehensive National HIV/AIDS Strategy.

2010–2013: CDC funded RTI International to adapt and evaluate the efficacy of an evidence-based HIV/STD behavioral intervention for sexually active and substance-using young African-American women 16 to 19 years old.

2011: A study by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) showed that treating HIV-positive people with antiretroviral drugs reduced transmission of HIV.

2012: HHS funded the $44 million Care and Prevention in the United States (CAPUS) Demonstration Project to reduce HIV and AIDS-related morbidity and mortality among racial and ethnic minorities in eight cities.

2012: HHS approved a set of seven common core indicators (PDF, 68KB) to monitor HHS-funded prevention, treatment, and care services, as well as to standardize data collection and grantee-reporting requirements, reduce reporting burdens, and increase efficiency.

2012: HHS and the MAC AIDS Fund convened a meeting that led to the development of HarborPath, an online portal for health care providers to help uninsured individuals with HIV get access to medications and/or medication assistance programs.

2012: The National Black Women's HIV/AIDS Network, the Kaiser Family Foundation, and Alicia Keys created the Empowered Community Grants program, which supports innovative programs for marginalized, underserved populations of women who do not have or cannot get prevention and care services.

2012: The National Black Women's HIV/AIDS Network coordinated a White House Forum on African-Americans and HIV/AIDS.

2013: AIDS Alliance for Women, Infants, Children, Youth & Families was one of the national organizations that endorsed a briefing marking the first National Youth HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.

2013: The White House announced the allocation of $100 million for the NIH HIV Cure Initiative, which focuses on the development of new therapies toward a cure.

2014: The Positive Women's Network published "Understanding the promise: considering the experiences of women living with HIV to maximize effectiveness of HIV prevention technologies" in the spring issue of Women's Health Issues.

2015: On July 30, the White House released its National HIV/AIDS Strategy in the United States: Updated to 2020 (PDF, 2.2MB), which includes a comprehensive plan for reducing the number of new HIV infections between 2015 and 2020 by at least 25%.

2015: In December, scientists from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), said the findings from three studies from 2006 to 2015 showed that starting antiretroviral therapy (ART) after HIV diagnosis protects the health of the infected individual while preventing HIV transmission to uninfected sexual partners.

2016: In July, scientists from the Promoting Maternal and Infant Survival Everywhere (PROMISE) study, funded by NIH, reported that both three-drug maternal antiretroviral therapy and daily infant nevirapine were safe and effective at preventing HIV transmission during breastfeeding.

Stigma and social support

2006–present: The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) has trained 6,500 social workers on HIV and AIDS, mental health, and strengths-based practice. The NASW has also offered 25 workshops addressing the National HIV/AIDS Strategy.

2009: The Red Pump Project launched the Rock the Red Pump® social media campaign in support of National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.

2011: At the National HIV Prevention Conference, the Red Pump Project presented best practices for building an online community to support National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.

2012: The XIX International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2012) was held in Washington, DC, in honor of the end of the U.S. HIV travel and immigration ban. The United States hosted the conference for the first time since 1990.

2012: During AIDS 2012, the AIDS Memorial Quilt was displayed in its entirety for the first time since 1996.

2012: The President signed a memorandum forming a federal working group and directing agencies to coordinate efforts on the intersection of violence against women and girls, HIV/AIDS, and gender-related health disparities.

2014: CDC launched "Start Talking. Stop HIV," a communication campaign under its Act Against AIDS initiative that is designed to eliminate stigma and discrimination and promote open communication between gay and bisexual men about a range of HIV prevention strategies.

2014: The Department of Justice launched a new Web portal to help fight discrimination against people who have HIV/AIDS. Individuals can use the site to directly report cases of HIV-related discrimination.

2014: HHS announced the availability of $11 million in funding to enhance community health centers' efforts in communities highly affected by HIV, especially among racial and ethnic minorities.

2015: On October 20, Greater Than AIDS launched Empowered: Women, HIV & Intimate Partner Violence to bring more attention to the issues and provide resources for women who may be at risk of, or dealing with, abuse and HIV.

2016: On March 3, The White House Office of National AIDS Policy, the NIH Office of AIDS Research, and the National Institute of Mental Health hosted the meeting, "Translating Research to Action: Reducing HIV Stigma to Optimize HIV Outcomes." Participants discussed best practices for measuring and monitoring HIV stigma, as well as methods of intervention focused on reducing or overcoming stigma to improve HIV outcomes, as well as gaps in our understanding of stigma.