Two Rutgers faculty have joined New Jersey’s new End AIDS Epidemic Committee, which was initiated by Gov. Phil Murphy (D-N.J.) to prevent the spread of the HIV virus and improve the living conditions of those already diagnosed with it, according to an article by Newswise.
Rutgers School of Public Health Dean Perry Halkitis and Associate Professor of Epidemiology Henry Raymond will join the committee, according to the article.
“I am thrilled to partner with the State and other committed individuals to end HIV and AIDS in New Jersey,” Halkitis said. “Beyond addressing the biological component of the virus with pharmaceutical advances, we must also address the social stigma present around the disease and individuals living with it. As a committee of interdisciplinary individuals, I have no doubt that we will be able to address the virus from all angles.”
New Jersey also became the ninth state to join the Prevention Access Campaign, which is a health equity initiative that seeks to end the dual epidemics of HIV and HIV-related stigma by empowering people with HIV through accurate and meaningful information about their social, sexual and reproductive health, according to the article.
This announcement, along with Rutgers' involvement in the committee, came during the Rutgers School of Public Health’s Annual World AIDS Day Conference in December 2018. This further solidifies New Jersey's commitment to partner with interdisciplinary researchers, activists and educators to end the complex disease, according to the article.
"Rutgers School of Public Health is honored to participate in the New Jersey HIV Elimination Initiative announced by Governor Murphy last World AIDS Day,” Raymond said. “Our expertise in HIV epidemiology will provide a data-based approach to priorities and programs needed to end new HIV infections in the State."