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HIVMA Names Judith Feinberg, MD, FIDSA as Chair of its Board of Directors

Judith Feinberg.jpgHIVMA is pleased to announce the election of five members to its Board of Directors and to name Judith Feinberg, MD, FIDSA as its new Chair. Dr. Feinberg is Professor of Medicine/Infectious Diseases and Professor of Behavioral Medicine and Psychiatry at West Virginia University. She also serves as the E.B. Flink Vice Chair of Medicine for Research.

Dr. Feinberg has been involved in HIV care, research and education since the beginning of the epidemic, and has made tremendous contributions to the transformation of this once-lethal disease into a manageable, chronic condition.  She has also long been involved in various public health aspects of HIV/AIDS, including resource allocation and policy development, the FDA approval process, and the development of harm reduction programs to prevent the spread of HIV and hepatitis due to the current opioid epidemic. 

“While research has brought highly potent, well-tolerated, simpler therapies to people living with HIV, access to knowledgeable care, adherence and successful virologic suppression still eludes many, especially young black MSM whose infection rate is higher than Sub-Saharan Africa. In the absence of an effective vaccine, limiting HIV spread through ‘Treatment as Prevention’ and PrEP are key strategies that must be optimized. Reaching young black and Latino MSM for PrEP and care for those already infected is critical for ending the epidemic in the US. Ensuring the continuation of a robust Ryan White Program--instrumental in providing care for the uninsured and underinsured--is also critical. These are all challenges that HIVMA must face through legislative advocacy and moral leadership. I look forward to leading HIVMA as we confront these challenges and to leading contributing to the commitment to end the HIV epidemic by 2030,” said Dr. Feinberg.

The five newly-elected HIVMA Board members are:

  • Ernie-Paul Barrette, MD, Medical Director, HIV and Virology Clinic, Division of Infectious Diseases, Principal Investigator, Ryan White Part C Grant, Washington University School of Medicine. Since witnessing the growing HIV epidemic as a medical student, Dr. Barrette has dedicated his career to providing primary HIV care. In addition to working tirelessly to expand HIV services in St. Louis, Dr. Barrette is also a clinical educator for fellows, residents, and medical students. He looks forward to bringing these experiences as well as his perspective as a political activist to the HIVMA leadership during these challenging times.
  • Rachel Bender Ignacio, MD, MPH, Acting Assistant Professor, Division of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, University of Washington and the Associate Director of the UW AIDS Clinical Trials Unit. Dr. Bender Ignacio has dedicated herself to HIV research and clinical care since her medical training began with work on prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV in Mozambique. Through her extensive global HIV work, she has come to view co-morbid HIV and cancer as a parallel problems and believes that in the era of cancer immunotherapy, we must understand how to optimally harness antiretroviral therapy as immunotherapy for patients with HIV-associated cancer. She aspires to provide supportive healthcare to individual patients she treats while promoting meaningful systematic change to improve the health of PLWH at home and abroad. She looks forward to joining HIVMA in its advocacy and policy development efforts.
  • Kimberly Scarsi, PharmD, MS, Associate Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science. Dr. Scarsi served a previous partial term on the HIVMA Board of Directors and was re-elected to serve a full term. She became a pharmacist in the late 1990s as the benefits of antiretroviral therapy were being fully realized. Dr. Scarsi’s work today involves ongoing clinical care of a diverse group of patients receiving either antiretroviral therapy or pre-exposure prophylaxis, education of all cadres of healthcare providers to develop the next generation of HIV-focused providers, systematic evaluation of innovative pharmacist-provided services in a collaborative practice environment, and a clinical pharmacology research program focused on supporting critical populations, including women living with HIV and persons affected by tuberculosis.
  • Donna Sweet, MD, Professor, Internal Medicine at the University of Kansas School of Medicine-Wichita, Director, Ryan White Programs at the University of Kansas School of Medicine, Wichita Medical Practice Association. Having worked in HIV since the early 1980s, Dr. Sweet has seen the disease go from a death sentence to a long-term chronic illness. She is passionate about ensuring that all patients in this country get access to lifesaving HIV medicines no matter their socioeconomic status, gender identity or geographical location. She is focused on bringing care to rural areas of her state and has developed a rural outreach clinic system so that patients in the most rural part of Kansas have access to Ryan White funding benefits as well as HIV expert care. She looks forward to bringing her advocacy experience to the HIVMA Board of Directors.
  • Rochelle Walensky, MD, MPH, FIDSA, Chief, Division of Infectious Diseases, Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Walensky’s research focuses on HIV/AIDS policy and cost-effective strategies of HIV care in the US and in resource-limited settings. Her work has been instrumental in changes to US HIV testing and immigration policy and has promoted expanded funding for HIV-related research, treatment and PEPFAR. It has also led to policy revisions toward aggressive HIV screening, prevention and earlier treatment. Walensky looks forward to using her clinical, administrative and research experience to continue to advocate on behalf of HIVMA members for people at risk for and living with HIV in the US and abroad. Dr. Walensky is honored to serve as the board’s Vice Chair as part of the Executive Committee.

Joining Drs. Feinburg and Walensky on the HIVMA Board of Directors Executive Committee will be: Chair-Elect Rajesh Gandhi, MD, FIDSA, Director of HIV Clinical Services and Education at Massachusetts General Hospital, and Immediate Past Chair W. David Hardy, MD, Division of Infectious Diseases, Johns Hopkins University. Wendy Armstrong, MD, FIDSA, Medical Director, Ponce de Leon Center, Atlanta, will represent HIVMA on the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA)’s Board of Directors.

The following members will continue their service on the HIVMA Board:

  • Allison Agwu, MD, ScM, FAAP, FIDSA, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Md.
  • Jennifer Chang, MD, Kaiser Permanente at Los Angeles Medical Center, Los Angeles, Calif.
  • Demetre Daskalakis, MD, MPH, New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, New York, NY
  • Michelle Floris-Moore, MD, University of North Carolina School of Medicine, Chapel Hill, NC
  • Marwan S. Haddad, MD, MPH, Community Health Center Inc., New Haven, Conn.
  • Colleen F. Kelley, MD, MPH, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Ga.
  • Lynsay MacLaren, MPH, MPAS, PA, Whitman-Walker Health, Washington, DC
  • Alice Thornton, MD, University of Kentucky School of Medicine, Lexington, Ky.

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