HHS Releases a Clinical Guide on the Treatment of Women with HIV
Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tommy G. Thompson has announced the release of “A Guide to the Clinical Care of Women with HIV.” According to Secretary Thompson, this is believed to be the first manual specifically written for the medical treatment of women with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). The manual provides practical, experience-based advice and treatment guidelines for clinicians treating women with HIV. “This new manual could not be more timely,” Secretary Thompson said. “HIV infection among women has become the fifth leading cause of death among women between the ages of 25 and 44. Information in this guide will help clinicians improve treatment and save the lives of HIV-positive women and their babies.” Of the 43,517 new cases of HIV in the United States reported from July 1999 to June 2000, 24 percent were among women. By contrast, in 1985, women represented just 6 percent of the reported 10,000 U.S. cases of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Copies of the guide are available online athttp://www.hab.hrsa.gov/womencare.htm.
CSAT Offers Grants for Rural Drug Treatment Centers
The Centers for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) has announced a grant program to support the development of addiction treatment centers and exemplary practice models for rural communities experiencing problems with addiction to heroin or prescription opiates such as OxyContin or hydrocodone. The grant awards will help treatment providers (including physicians, hospitals, community health centers and community mental health centers) implement best medication-assisted practices for opioid agonist treatment in rural communities where previous access to treatment has been limited or nonexistent. Projects should be prepared to provide leadership in creating a consensus among state and local communities toward the goal of developing opioid agonist treatment strategies that will meet the unique needs of the community, and addressing new and emerging treatment needs related to the increased availability of heroin or illicitly used prescribed opioid medications. The CSAT anticipates awarding five grants. Applications for this funding must be received by September 10, 2001. For more information, visithttp://www.samhsa.gov/grants/grants.html.
Federal Agencies Mark 20th Anniversary of First AIDS Case
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is observing the 20th anniversary of the first AIDS case in the United States with the launch of a Web site that documents how the agency responded during the early years of the virus. The Web site offers published articles, selected press releases and unpublished documents on AIDS, transcripts of interviews, audio clips, images and a timeline of major events in AIDS history from 1981 to 1988. An ongoing project, the site will be updated over time with more oral histories and other archival material. To access the online history project, visithttp://aidshistory.nih.gov.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released data of AIDS cases and deaths during the past 20 years and has issued a new HIV prevention strategy. According to the CDC, since the first case was identified in 1981, 774,467 AIDS cases have been reported in the United States and approximately 450,000 Americans have died. The CDC estimates that 500,000 to 600,000 people in the United States are living with HIV infection, while 320,000 people are living with AIDS. The CDC's prevention plan to cut annual HIV infections in the United States by one half within five years includes: mobilization to increase the proportion of infected individuals who know their status; new prevention programs for individuals living with HIV, combined with improved linkages to treatment and care; and highly targeted prevention programs for HIV-negative individuals at greatest risk. The CDC press release outlining this prevention strategy for the third decade of the disease can be obtained athttp://www.cdc.gov/hiv/pubs/facts.htm.
New Web Site Provides Information on Food-borne Illnesses
A new Web site offers health care professionals access to an extensive source of government information that will allow them to locate clinical information and better diagnose patients with food-borne illness and educate patients about food safety. Features of the Web site include: “The Bad Bug Book” and fact sheets which provide information about symptoms of food-borne illness and what types of organisms may cause patients to become ill; “Diagnosis and Management of Food-borne Illness: A Primer for Physicians” that discusses the diagnostic features and laboratory tests used to confirm the presence of certain organisms; resources for patients at high-risk of food-borne illness and information on topics such as food allergies and dietary supplements; and access to medical publications such as Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The new Web site can be accessed athttp://www.foodsafety.gov.
NIH Establishes National Family Registry for Scleroderma
A national Scleroderma Family Registry and DNA Repository has been established by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Its overall objective is to identify genes that influence susceptibility to scleroderma, a complex, chronic, autoimmune disease. The registry is led by Dr. Maureen D. Mayes, professor of internal medicine, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, Mich. The registry will study both families with only one case of scleroderma and those with more than one case (known as multiplex families). To learn more about the registry, contact the registry coordinator, Marilyn Perry, Scleroderma Family & DNA Repository, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Hutzel Hospital, 4707 St. Antoine, Detroit, MI 48201; toll-free telephone: 800-736-6864; fax: 313-966-7776; e-mail:email@example.com.