The HIV Crisis in America: The Long Road to Action
The HIV/AIDS epidemic in the United States has a long history with offerings of important lessons for practitioners and public alike. Building upon the momentum of the 1969 Stonewall Riots, the gay community formed citizen action groups in cities across the nation. Citizen action became especially necessary as the federal response to HIV/AIDS research and policy stalled. Initially, these citizen action groups worked to educate gay men about Hepatitis B and promote research on sexually transmitted diseases. The pathogen that would come to be know as Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) likely circulated for decades before attracting systematic attention. Many citizen action groups began to produce sex-positive, norm-based prevention programs that curtailed infection rates among gay men within the first three years of the epidemic. The passage of the Ryan White Comprehensive AIDS Resources Emergency (CARE) Act opened the next chapter of the American HIV/AIDS story which saw the transition from a nascent, largely reactive national response to a more forward-looking approach.
A specialist in the field of epidemiology and human diseases, Dr. Simons’ research interest involves infectious diseases and their respective preventive methods, surveillance and distribution. Dr. Simons serves as a Certified Reporter for EpiCore, a disease notification dissemination service associated with ProMED (Program for Monitoring Emerging Diseases). Dr. Simons is a Professor in the Department of Health Promotion where she is the graduate coordinator and teaches Principles of Epidemiology and Epidemiology in Public Health. Dr. Simons joined the Department of Health Promotion Faculty in August of 1992.
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American Politics | Epidemiology | Immune System Diseases
Simons, Sheila, "The HIV Crisis in America: The Long Road to Action" (2019). For All the People Video. 6.