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Intersection: The Battle Against HIV/AIDs And The Task Still Ahead

The Infectious Disease Elimination Act (IDEA Exchange): Reducing the spread of HIV and Hepatitis C through harm reduction.

Saturday is World AIDs day. In the three decades since the first World AIDS day to bring attention to the disease, big strides have been made in the treatment and care of HIV patients.

Still, millions of people around the globe are living with HIV and last year alone nearly 2 million people were newly infected.

So what work still needs to be done to stop the spread of HIV? How have attitudes to AIDS and understanding and awareness of how it spreads changed in the last 30 years?

90.7's Matthew Peddie speaks with a panel of experts and advocates to talk about the ongoing work to combat the epidemic.

  • Joshua J. Meyers, Community Development Director at Orlando’s Hope and Help Clinic. Hope and Help offers free HIV screening and other assistance for HIV patients.
  • Dr. Hansel Tookes, Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. He is the Principal Investigator of the UM Harm Reduction Research Group which houses the IDEA Exchange, Miami’s pilot syringe access program.
  • Austin Coye, medical student at the University of Miami, Miller School of Medicine. She works with Dr. Tookes at the IDEA exchange and is an advocate for setting up a similar program in Orlando.
  • Rene Plasencia, Florida State Representative (R) representing district 50. He introduced legislation to set up needle exchange programs throughout the state by expanding Miami’s needle exchange.
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