Collaboration in Tri-County HIV/AIDS, STD &Hepatitis Program Services

State: FL Type: Neither Year: 2015

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Seminole County is located in east central Florid and predominately a residential community and approximately 70% of its residents work outside the county. An estimated 30% of the population lives in unincorporated areas. Seminole County consists of the seven following incorporated municipalities. Seminole County is the most densely populated county in the central Florida region with 436,041 (2010 US Census Bureau) residents living within 321 square miles or 1317 persons per square mile. The racial and ethnic makeup of the Seminole consists of Whites (81%), Blacks/African Americans (11%), Asians (4%), 0.3% Native Americans, and 0.1% Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islanders. The population identified as Hispanic origin of any race comprised 17.3% of population. Languages other than English are spoken in 19% of homes. During the period of 2008-12, an estimated 10.8% of the total population in Seminole County was living at or below the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). This indicated an increase from 9.4% of the population living at or below FPL during 2005-09. The racial and ethnic distribution of those living at or below FPL represented 25% of African Americans, 16% of Native Americans, 15% of Hispanics, 9% of Whites, and 6% of Asians. In 2010, the population in Orange County grew to 1,112,526 residents. The county’s population, like many populations across the nation, is becoming older and more diverse. The percentage of the population ages 55-85+ grew by almost 2% from 2005-2010. The White population accounts for 46.5% of the total population, down from 51.5% in 2005. Among minority groups, 27.7% are Hispanic and 25.8% are Black/African American. Osceola County experienced a 61% growth in population from 2000 to 2011. The estimated 2011 population was 276,163. The three largest municipalities had tremendous population growth over the past decade; Kissimmee 25%; St. Cloud 75%; and Poinciana 290%. Osceola County has a greater Hispanic population subset as compared to the state and nation. Within Osceola County, both Kissimmee and Poinciana’s majority population is of Hispanic ethnicity. Osceola County’s Black/African American population is lower than both the state and nation. However, when Hispanic and Black/African America population combine, they represent a majority population for both Kissimmee and Poinciana (71% and 76% respectively). This fact is important in that these are population groups considered to be at risk for suffering greater health disparities. The estimated rate of new HIV infections among Hispanics/Latinos in the U.S. in 2010 was more than three times the rate of Whites (27.5 vs 8.7 per 100,000 populations). According to the 2011 State HIV Prevention Progress Report, only 52.1% of Hispanics and 68.4% of Blacks in Florida had ever been tested for HIV. The Area 7 HIV/AIDS Program Office includes Seminole, Orange, Osceola, and Brevard counties which includes 28.4% new HIV infection cases among Hispanics, compared to 38.4% Blacks. Contributing risk factors include unprotected sexual contact; higher presence of STD’s which increase the likelihood of infection, and cultural factors and fears that may lead minorities to avoid testing, treatment, or disclosing their status to partners. According to Florida Department of Health Merlin Communicable Disease Reporting System (2014), Chronic Hepatitis C case counts between January – October 2014, in the central Florida region consists of the following: 389 cases in Seminole County, 1170 cases in Orange County and 295 cases in Osceola County. Goal 1: To increase health awareness in Latino/Hispanic community in Seminole, Orange, and Osceola counties.  Provide health screenings and educational materials at community events. Goal 2:  Motivate participants to know their HIV, Hepatitis, and STD status and make positive healthy behavior choices. Offer free health screenings and counseling. Provide incentives to access services. Goal 3:  Provide a collaborative partnership for community-based organizations (CBO), AIDS service organizations (ASO), governmental and non-governmental agencies. Collaborate to plan population-specific national public health awareness events throughout the community. Monthly planning meetings with community partners and Coalition members. Provide up to date information about national and statewide Latino/Hispanic initiatives. Align coalition members planned activities with the National HIV/AIDS Strategies goals and CDC High Impact Prevention model by promoting community events and planning annual National Latino AIDS Awareness Day events. Hispanic Faith Breakfast was implemented in 2011 to encourage Hispanic faith leaders to participate at the National Week of Prayer for the Healing of AIDS. ·         Retain an average of 12 to 15 members to participate at monthly meetings ·         Coalition aligned activities with 2012 Florida Hispanic Initiative “112,000 Tested in 2012” to encourage HIV testing. ·         Annual National Latino AIDS Awareness Day events planned starting with the theme  “Despierta” (Walk-Up) during 2006-2010 and for the past 4 years theme to reflect the national them, such as “Commit to Speak” of 2013 and 2014. ·         58 churches attended the first Hispanic Faith Breakfast 2011 resulting with 20 churches participating during National Week of Prayer for the Healing of AIDS yielding over 640 individuals receiving HIV/AIDS information. 2012 Hispanic Faith Breakfast 51 faith leader attended, Cable Spanish News channel InfoMas interviewed attendees. Website:  http://www.cafelatinocoalition.com/
Central Florida’s Hispanic population has steadily risen along with the rate of HIV infection. Currently, there are no Hispanic-focused CBO or ASO and there are no funded HIV/AIDS programs/interventions targeting Hispanics. Language barriers, social economics barriers and fear/stigma associated to HIV/AIDS are the main contributors for lack of knowledge and lack of culturally specific organizations providing services. Statewide efforts have been implemented to reach the Hispanic community with the currently Florida Latino AIDS Advisory Group (FLAAG) which was formed to address the Latino/Hispanic rise of HIV infection. The main funding for Hispanics is focused in South Florida.  Locally, Café Latino Coalition has been the sole group focus on delivering education, information and opportunity to get tested for HIV without funding.
Heathcare-associated Infections|HIV in the U.S.|Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV and Syphilis
Statewide efforts have been implemented to reach the Hispanic community with the currently Florida Latino AIDS Advisory Group (FLAAG) which was formed to address the Latino/Hispanic rise of HIV infection. The main funding for Hispanics is focused in South Florida.  Locally, Café Latino Coalition has been the sole group focus on delivering education, information and opportunity to get tested for HIV without funding.
Evaluations are perfomed at all events.
The Coalition is currently working on a sustainability plan.
Colleague from another public health agency|NACCHO website
 
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