Recently, the SF Dept of Public Health Director, Mitchell H Katz, MD, informed the Board of Supervisors that their approval was needed to apply for emergency HIV funding. The Ryan White Emergency Relief Grant will be helpful for replacing critical funding lost over the past 2 years.
Of course, unlike other parts of San Francisco, the TransMission does not have a wealth of HIV clinics. Residents in the area typically rely on St. Luke’s but it is not a public clinic. Emergency relief funding for HIV may result in a focus on the TransMission, but it is difficult to assess. For now, the closest HIV clinics are near Eureka Valley and the Castro.
In the meantime, it appears that funding will continue to dwindle for the time being. Although grants are necessary, they have yet to be received. HIV awareness, at one time, relied upon communities educating each other. In order to correct the lack of HIV awareness, TransMission community members can start with talking about HIV to their friends.
Knowing where to go is one part of the battle but knowing when to go get tested is a helpful thing to review with friends. For more information about HIV education in the San Francisco community, contact the sfaf.org website.