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School and Program Updates

School and Program Updates

Puerto Rico Establishes Collaboration with PR-NHBS

The University of Puerto Rico Graduate School of Public Health established collaboration with the Puerto Rico HIV Surveillance System in order to create the Data Analysis and Publication Core (DAPuC). The objective of this core is to develop peer-reviewed publications and targeted scientific dissemination of the most relevant findings to health care professionals and the general public using data from the National HIV Behavioral Surveillance System (NHBS), a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) initiative. The NHBS, has monitored behavioral practices -since 2003- and seropositivity -since 2005- among high risk populations such as men who have sex with men (MSM), high risk heterosexuals (HET) and injected drug users (IDU). In DAPuC’s first publication, entitled “Coming Out to Health Care Providers in Puerto Rico: Opportunities for Prevention, Linkage and Engagement in Care”, it was found that 53.3 percent of the MSM disclose to their healthcare provider their sexual identity. Older MSM are more likely to disclose as compared with young MSM. This publication will be part of the International Journal of Sexual Health GLBT Health and Well-being in the Caribbean special issue. The issue will be available in summer 2015. As a result of DAPuC’s efforts, an additional grant was obtained to continue efforts for upcoming NHBS cycles.The study was led by Dr. Vivian Colon-Lopez, associate professor of health services administration department, Ms. Carola T. Sánchez-Díaz, and Ileska Valencia-Torres (Center for Evaluation and Sociomedical Research).