View the webinar recording here!
Through the COVID-19 pandemic, our team at bioLytical have been inspired by the creativity and strength of the HIV testing community.
During our first-ever Community Conversation in May, four panelists from across the US talked about how their organizations continued during COVID-19. We heard about how technology can help bring counseling sessions into virtual spaces, new workflows that can help keep clients and staff safe, and much more. Plus, the panelists shared their thoughts on the future of HIV testing and what we can do to keep up this vital work.
Our amazing listener feedback told us that you want to learn more about drive-thru, curbside and drive-up testing. How does it work? What are the best practices? Do clients feel safe and protected with this new approach?
So, to continue sharing information and supporting each other, we decided to hold another Community Conversation. Featuring two HIV testers who have initiated successful new drive-up programs during the pandemic, this webinar is a chance to learn how they adapted and what they have discovered.
Who’s on the panel?
Joey Olsen, CrescentCare, Lousiana
Joseph Olsen graduated from The Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine with a Master’s in Program Design and Management. He has worked in the field of HIV for 7 years and has grown his program to be the 3rd largest publicly funded HIV testing program in Louisiana. The program includes 4 clinic locations and over 15 community partner locations.
Joseph has worked closely with the state and CDC to pilot changes in testing technology and protocols. He has presented the findings of these advances with these partners at multiple national and state conferences. At the time that his agency (CrescentCare) became a FQHC, Joseph implemented at rapid/routine testing program to integrate client buy-in across all FQHC Services. Further, CrescentCare was an early adopter of the Rapid START model of linking newly diagnosed clients to care. Across these programs, there is now a 97% same day linkage-to-care rate.
Working to leverage all the agency’s assets though program collaboration across service areas has been an exciting challenge for Joey. It is also a rewarding experience as the agency continues to see ever increasing client access, linkage, and retention in care not only for HIV/AIDS services but for PrEP, and Primary Care services for all.
Ismael Salamanca, LGBTQ Center Long Beach, California
Ismael Salamanca, or commonly known to everyone as Ish, has worked in HIV prevention since the Spring of 2000 and has been with the LGBTQ Center Long Beach since January 2008. In his tenure with the Center he has developed a trustworthy HIV testing and STI screening program, offering free services and treatment.
As the Center’s Director of Health Services, he has been recognized by the Los Angeles Department of Health for the trendsetting STI screening service model in community storefronts and looked to by the Long Beach Health and Human Services Department to improve sexual health needs for LGBTQ communities in Long Beach.
Most recently, he and his team started the Transgender Health Program focused on linking transgender and Non-Binary people of color to HIV and STI services along with access to PrEP and medical care.
As director, he has had the opportunity to develop and produce multiple local community events. Most noteworthy, the Long Beach Gay Men’s Health Summit and, alongside his team, producing AIDS Walk Long Beach which takes place in November and is a 5k walk along the beach.
Ish is married to his partner of 14 years and together he and his husband live in North Long Beach where they are active in improving their neighborhood and creating a healthier community where we live. He is a cat dad to two girls, Calliope and Clio, and has recently adopted his late mother’s cat, Petey. He sees Long Beach as his home, his core and his community.
How can I watch?
View the recording here!
Do you want to learn more about the LGBT community, story and flags? Check out our blog post about LGBTQ+ Flags