Minority AIDS Initiative

The Minority AIDS Initiative (MAI) under the guidance of the SE AETC at Vanderbilt collaborates with Morehouse School of Medicine as its Georgia Local Partner (LP) and the MAI Regional Partner. Morehouse School of Medicine is one of three Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HCBU) medical schools in the nation with a mission of “improving the health and well-being of individuals and communities; increasing the diversity of the health professional and scientific workforce; and addressing primary healthcare needs through programs in education, research, and service, with emphasis on people of color and the underserved urban and rural populations in Georgia and the nation.” This mission aligns seamlessly with the MAI goal to provide training and technical assistance to build the capacity of minority and minority serving clinicians, through specialized projects to improve health outcomes of disproportionally affected people living with HIV.

Harold G. Stringer, Jr., MD., an Associate Professor of Medicine at Morehouse School of Medicine focusing on HIV/AIDS with a clinic at Grady Hospital in Atlanta has enthusiastically accepted the leadership position in the MAI work group with the SE AETC to create effective curriculum to train minority health and social service novice and experienced providers across the SE Region. He is a mentor of interprofessional education students participating in longitudinal preceptorships at his clinic and plans to transition key components of HIV care of those underserved to the PT and IPE projects.

We focus on the strengths of each Local Partner to create elements that improve training initiatives across the region, building a team environment that celebrates training achievements and minimizes redundancy and competition among the LPs. For example, enhancing the corrections training plans in Mississippi and North Carolina will increase MAI events for jail and prison medical personnel in the entire southeast region. Faculty from the Dental School at HBCU, Meharry Medical College provide multiple HIV and Oral Health presentations across Tennessee each year and plan to expand regionally with funding from this grant. We collaborate with Meharry medical student groups to train volunteers at a student run clinic for patients without access to health insurance. Between 2011-2013, TN provided an average of 16 MAI events per year reaching over 450 minority and minority-serving learners. In 2014, the TN AETC implemented cost effective monthly webcasts and minority provider internships, increasing the number of events to 31 and expanding its reach to 735 HIV providers. The education topics included specific interventions related to retention and care of young African American MSM and incorporated the Special Projects of National Significance initiative that focused on transgender care. Other highly-rated events included a large HIV networking event in Memphis drawing over 150 HIV providers together to “Overcome Challenges and Create Opportunities” through a full day interactive event featuring clinical and social service MAI presentations.

Other innovative and upcoming events in the Southeast region include:

  • Targeted Interventions for Female Sex Workers
  • Testing and Counseling Training for Providers and Residents at HBCUs
  • The Deadly Virus Behind the Virus: HIV Related Stigma
  • Prepped for PrEP: The Pros and Cons of Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis
  • Behavioral Patterns of HIV
  • STIs in MSM
  • Addressing Care and Clinical Issues in the Transgender Patient
  • African American Gay Family Networks: An Entry Point for HIV
  • Retention in Care for Young MSM
  • Providing Cultural Competent Care for MSM and Transgender Patients

Morehouse School of Medicine is leading efforts to integrate the issues of cultural competency, gender identification, and intimate partner violence in specific training interventions. In addition the MAI work group reviews results of the needs assessment and current SPNS programs to develop two special projects in the project period, in addition to the CDC testing project.