ViiV Healthcare announces recipients of largest philanthropic fund in the US dedicated to HIV prevention for Black women; 17 groups awarded grants to raise awareness, connect women to HIV care, drive narrative change among providers

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DURHAM, North Carolina , October 7, 2022 (press release) –

Seventeen organizations awarded grants to raise awareness, connect women to HIV care and drive narrative change among providers

ViiV Healthcare , the global specialist HIV company majority owned by GSK, with Pfizer Inc. and Shionogi Limited as shareholders, today announced the recipients of an $8 million investment to increase awareness and action around HIV prevention and care for Black women. Funding will support community programs focused on highlighting women’s reasons for HIV prevention, connecting women to care, training service providers and changing the narrative about HIV and Black women.

Over the next three years, 17 community-based organizations will reach more than one million people with reasons for HIV prevention and train more than 3,500 community providers to deliver HIV services to Black women better.

Today, Black women account for 61 percent of new HIV diagnoses in all US women. According to a recent study, PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) uptake has been persistently and particularly low among these women.1 HIV stigma perpetuates these trends and alienates Black women seeking to access prevention resources or care.

“In the US, Black women are rarely prioritized when it comes to HIV. That is why ViiV Healthcare is proud to fund community organizations that are leading a shift in this paradigm through our Risk to Reasons initiative,” said Dr. Kimberly Smith , Senior Vice President, Head of Research & Development at ViiV Healthcare . “With this – the largest fund in the US dedicated to Black women and HIV – we are doubling down on our commitment to fuel a wave of action aimed at disrupting the disparities that keep Black women from engaging in HIV prevention and care.”

Grantmaking is among the key pillars of Risk to Reasons – an expansion of the ViiV Healthcare Positive Action for Women community program, which focuses on women of color. Risk to Reasons was launched in 2022, guided by the Black Women’s Working Group to Reframe Risk (BWWG), a group of women living with and working in HIV. The initiative includes new content co-created with the community and community activations that spark critical conversations and propel action. At the heart of the initiative is a call to move away from the stigmatizing concept of ‘risk’ and toward a focus on the motivating reasons for HIV prevention.

Kinjo Kiema , Director of Organizing and Campaigns at Advocates for Youth, said, “As a Black woman, I know that shifting the narrative in ways that give us more agency and autonomy is vital to our wellbeing. This funding will allow us to continue to build out programming and organizing that is intersectional and supports the health and wellness of Black women and girls.”

“We look forward to seeing the outputs from this impressive group of grantees who, like us, recognize we won’t end the HIV epidemic without a commitment to supporting Black women’s needs,” said Dr. Smith . “We hope to see a groundswell of support for strong community infrastructure and changing how we talk about women’s reasons for HIV prevention.”

Risk to Reasons Grantee Organizations:

  • Advocates for Youth
  • African Services Committee
  • AIDS United
  • Black Ladies in Public Health Foundation
  • CAL-PEP
  • Multicultural AIDS Coalition Inc.
  • National Network to End Domestic Violence
  • Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan Washington DC Inc.
  • Positive People Network
  • Prevention Access Campaign, a program of fiscal sponsor Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs
  • Professional Association of Social Workers in HIV/AIDS
  • The Center for Black Health & Equity
  • The Community Health & Empowerment Network, Inc.
  • The Community Wellness Project
  • The Knights & Orchids Society
  • Transforming Re-Entry Services
  • WeCareTN

For more information and to stay up to date on new developments in the initiative, see here.

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About ViiV Healthcare

ViiV Healthcare is a global specialist HIV company established in November 2009 by GlaxoSmithKline (LSE: GSK) and Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) dedicated to delivering advances in treatment and care for people living with HIV and for people who have reasons for prevention. Shionogi joined as a shareholder in October 2012 . The company's aims are to take a deeper and broader interest in HIV and AIDS than any company has done before and take a new approach to deliver effective and innovative medicines for HIV treatment and prevention, as well as support communities affected by HIV.

For more information on the company, its management, portfolio, pipeline, and commitment, please visit www.viivhealthcare.com.

About GSK

GSK is a global biopharma company with a purpose to unite science, technology, and talent to get ahead of disease together. Find out more at gsk.com/company.

References:

1 Differences in Medical Mistrust Between Black and White Women: Implications for Patient-Provider Communication About PrEP: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7690288/

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