SWLAHEC’s HIV/AIDS Prevention (HAP)program has been providing HIV prevention services since 1997. These programs include street outreach and HIV testing recruitment, prevention materials availability, and HIV counseling, testing, and referral programs.
The street outreach and recruitment program is a community-levelintervention, which occurs on the streets and in community settings in the Lake Charles and surrounding areas. This project targets people who engage in high-risk behaviors that put them at risk for HIV and other STDs and recruits them to participate in SWLAHEC’s HIV testing program.
Street outreach consists of active street outreach and fixed site outreach. For the last three years, SWLAHEC has employed a more holistic approach to providing this intervention. Emphasis is not only on HIV prevention education and barrier method availability but also on providing referrals to agencies that can assist the client address both the direct and indirect risk factors for HIV.
SWLAHEC’s outcomes for providing the outreach and recruitment program has been (1) continued progress in the development of on-going relationships with target area residents, (2) providing information and referrals that will promote healthy behaviors and decrease risk factors for the transmission of HIV and other STDs, (3) providing of referrals for HIV prevention, counseling, and testing, and (4) the on-going development of collaborations with HIV treatment facilities/agencies and other agencies in SWLAHEC’s referral network.
The prevention materials availability program maintains 50 sites across Calcasieu, Allen, Jeff Davis, and Acadia Parishes. These sites include various venues where free prevention materials are available to the community. These programs are funded by Louisiana’s Office of Public Health.
For more information on this program, contact Tara Gary at HAP@swlahec.com