Dear Colleague: April 1, 2022
April 1, 2022
This week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) awarded funds to 36 community-based organizations (CBOs) under the program PS22-2203: Comprehensive High-Impact HIV Prevention Programs for Young Men of Color Who have Sex with Men and Young Transgender Persons of Color. Through this funding opportunity, CBOs will develop and implement high-impact HIV prevention programs for young men of color who have sex with men, young transgender persons of color, and their partners regardless of age, gender, and race/ethnicity. This funding opportunity complements the Ending the HIV Epidemic in the U.S. (EHE) initiative in its aim to achieve health equity, reduce disparities, and address social determinants of health. PS22-2203 is a $72 million, 5-year program; first-year funding is approximately $14.4 million.
Community-based organizations have been vital to our nation’s HIV prevention efforts since the earliest days of the HIV epidemic. CBOs have unparalleled knowledge of and credibility and experience within the communities they serve and are uniquely positioned to extend the reach of HIV prevention efforts implemented by state and local health departments. Funded CBOs will develop client-centered, high-impact HIV prevention programs that use a combination of HIV prevention strategies and provide services that continually engage people who could benefit from HIV care, prevention, and essential support services. These comprehensive HIV prevention programs will be guided by a status neutral approach to service and will address the social determinants of health that adversely affect HIV outcomes in young gay, bisexual and other MSM and transgender persons of color. The increasing investment in organizations that serve these populations represents an effort to promote and achieve progress in health equity.
In all regions of the U.S., gay and bisexual men are the group most affected by HIV. In 2019, about 70 percent of new HIV infections each year were among gay and bisexual men, even though they make up only 2 percent of the population, with the highest burden among Black and Hispanic/Latino gay and bisexual men and young men. By age group, people ages 25-34 years have the highest rate of annual HIV infections. In 2019, youth ages 13-24 years accounted for 21 percent of new HIV infections and are the least likely of any age group to have a suppressed viral load. Furthermore, just 23 percent of the estimated more than one million Americans who could benefit from pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) are using it, and some of the largest gaps are among gay and bisexual men of color and transgender women. This new funding opportunity will help accelerate efforts to deliver necessary prevention and treatment interventions and support services to populations that could most benefit from them.
In addition to funding health departments and CBOs to meet the HIV prevention needs of young gay and bisexual men of color and young transgender people of color, CDC is also strengthening the HIV prevention workforce and developing communication resources for consumers and health care providers. As part of the EHE initiative, this year, CDC’s Let’s Stop HIV Together will be expanding its campaign resources for transgender people by developing new materials aimed at helping transgender women obtain quality health care. The campaign will also refresh and promote resources for health care providers to build their capacity for providing gender-affirming, person-centered care.
PS22-2203 builds on CDC’s longstanding commitment to partnering with CBOs to advance innovative HIV prevention strategies and eliminate social and structural barriers to HIV prevention and care. The full list of funded CBOs and program details can be found on the PS22-2203 YMSMTG NOFO website.
Demetre C. Daskalakis, MD, MPH
Division of HIV Prevention
National Center for HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention Centers for Disease Control and Prevention