During the XIX International AIDS Conference, the Latino Commission on AIDS, in collaboration with Merck (known as MSD outside of the U.S. and Canada), launched Sharing Stories, Creating Hope, an innovative multimedia HIV educational campaign. The bilingual campaign connects the stories of health-care providers and Latinos/Hispanics living with HIV to demonstrate culturally-relevant HIV care strategies. This public health tool inspires a shared hope that reinforces how individuals and communities can come together to reduce HIV-related healthcare disparities.
Hispanics account for approximately 16 percent of the U.S. population, yet they account for about 20 percent of all new HIV cases. Delayed testing and access to care are some reasons why Latinos/Hispanics are often diagnosed at a late stage of HIV infection. Sharing Stories, Creating Hope aims to address the unique challenges the community faces by strengthening patient-provider relationships and supporting engagement in care for Latinos/Hispanics living with HIV.
“Making a culturally relevant campaign accessible to providers and people living with HIV in order to further educate about the benefits of accessing HIV care and staying in treatment is critical for meeting the goals of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy, which calls for significantly reducing new HIV infections and improving care for people living with HIV,” stated Guillermo Chacon, President, Latino Commission on AIDS. “We are pleased to work with Merck to launch this campaign, which is important not just for the Latino community, but the entire HIV field.”
“Merck has a longstanding history of collaborating with the HIV community to reduce healthcare disparities in treatment and care,” said Chirfi Guindo, Merck General Manager and Global Commercial Leader, HIV. “Our unique cross-sector collaboration with the Latino Commission on AIDS is paramount to ensuring communities have access to culturally and linguistically relevant resources. We are proud to support the Sharing Stories, Creating Hope campaign that transforms the experiences of individuals into concrete strategies to improve linkage to and retention in HIV care.”
Key components of the Sharing Stories, Creating Hope campaign include:
* Bilingual videos highlighting effective, replicable HIV care strategies for both patients and providers to implement
* Relevant and relatable personal stories of Latinos/Hispanics across the U.S and in Puerto Rico
* Bilingual tools for the facilitators of individual or group programs accompanied by an action-oriented resource for participants
The Latino Commission on AIDS and Merck recognize the tremendous contributions of the video participants and the local, regional and national participants to making this project a reality.
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