Infectious Diseases focuses on legal, regulatory, and policy responses to HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria. This area includes the development and implementation of legal preparedness instruments.
The O’Neill Institute is working in partnership with NMAC to examine the status of biomedical HIV prevention research and implementation in the United States. The focus of the project is to explore how to bring the promise of biomedical HIV prevention to all communities highly impacted by HIV. Biomedical HIV prevention offers a range of tools that can effectively prevent HIV infection. These tools include treatment as prevention (TasP), pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), and post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP).
The O’Neill Institute will produce a two-part report, Blueprint for HIV Biomedical Prevention. The first of two reports, "Blueprint for HIV Biomedical Prevention: State of the State," was released on December 3, 2016 at the National HIV PrEP Summit in San Francisco. The State of the State report provides an overview of policies and programs that are critical to effective biomedical HIV prevention in communities of color. The report highlights current health department and community efforts to implement the new science. It also includes descriptions of the roles played by selected federal agencies in supporting biomedical HIV prevention and identifies some of their key recent initiatives.
The second of two reports, "Blueprint for HIV Biomedical Prevention: Recommendations for the New Administration," will be released in the first quarter of 2017.
The O’Neill Institute received a generous grant from amfAR, the Foundation for AIDS Research, to examine critical policy issues that impact access, availability and acceptability of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and long-acting agents, which are innovative forms of PrEP and HIV treatment that are under development and do not require daily pill taking. The project will explore how to support uptake of effective HIV prevention and treatment modalities for adolescents and young adults, with a focus on young Black gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men.
Through a series of consultation meetings, the O’Neill Institute will bring together a diverse array of stakeholders to explore legal, ethical, and policy issues surrounding PrEP for adolescents and young adults, evaluate barriers and opportunities for increasing the engagement of adolescents and young adults in PrEP research and clinical practice, and initiate a policy dialogue for the future deployment of long-acting agents for both PrEP and HIV treatment. The first consultation meeting of this project was held on December 19, 2016 at Georgetown University Law Center, and additional meetings are scheduled for 2017. The O’Neill Institute will develop issue briefs on the topics of these meetings for public dissemination.
The Hepatitis Policy Project (HPP) focuses on issues and barriers of access to effective treatments for hepatitis C. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, hepatitis C-related deaths are on the rise as are rates of liver disease and liver cancer, which are often caused by hepatitis C. The agency also says the vast majority of adults infected with hepatitis C are baby boomers (those born between 1945 and 1965) and most don't know they have it. Many were infected in the 1970s and 1980s when rates of the disease were highest.