Taking care of U
In 2016 Governor Scott signed into law the Miami Dade Disease Elimination Act. This law authorizes the University of Miami to pilot the first needle exchange program in Florida. This program currently is a partnership between the Infectious Diseases Division in the Department of Medicine and the Department of Public Health Sciences. Full credit goes to a Department of Medicine Resident, Dr Hansel Tookes, for shouldering the effort to move this through legislature, and is working closely with ID and the Department of Public Health Sciences to ensure the project is successful. High interest in this project has come from the Department of Health and the Surgeon General Dr. Celeste Philip who are supportive of the care aspects linked to the project. This includes HIV and Hepatitis C testing, linkage into care, and linkage to HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis.
The Division of Infectious Diseases recently completed a multi-center HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis trial. The effort in Miami was performed at the Miami DoH STD clinic. This partnership is now extending into a clinical effort with a planned PrEP clinic at the DoH Miami overseen by Dr. Doblecki-Lewis of Infectious Diseases.
Over the past six months, working with the the DoH and South Florida AIDS Network (SFAN), Dr. Allan Rodriguez and the Adult HIV Clinic team has piloted a new “Rapid Response” effort. The goal of this effort is when an individual seen at the STD clinic was found to be HIV positive that they were accompanied into the HIV clinic where they received confirmatory testing and begun on antiretroviral therapy within seven days. The State has shown a great interest in this effort and will be expanding this into other counties and venues of testing.