The HIV Planning Council is made up of 34 voting members from CDC-funded prevention programs (both directly and indirectly funded), Ryan White Treatment Modernization Act-funded care and support services programs (Parts B, C, and D), collaborating state agencies, community-based organizations (CBOs), faith-based programs, and interested community members. Participation from consumers living with HIV/AIDS is ensured, with the bylaws mandating that 7 of the 34 members be persons who are HIV positive.
The Council meets periodically throughout the year in Columbia. Applications for membership are sent out in the fall of each year as well as distributed at the annual S.C. HIV, STD and Viral Hepatitis Conference. Persons selected serve a two year term. The membership of the HPC reflects, as much as possible, the demographic characteristics of the HIV epidemic in South Carolina. The following criteria are utilized to assist in the selection of members:
- Infected or affected by HIV;
- At least two years' experience providing HIV prevention and/or care services;
- Expertise in the following HIV-related program services areas: HIV clinical care, linkage to care, case management, housing, mental health, substance use prevention or treatment, counseling and testing services, partner services, comprehensive risk counseling services, and/or evidence-based health education/risk reduction programs;
- Representation from a geographical area highly impacted by HIV; and
- Representative of priority populations for targeting high impact prevention services: persons living with HIV, African American Men who have Sex with Men, African American Men who have Sex with Women, White Men who have Sex with Men, African American Women who have Sex with Men, Hispanics/Latinos, and Injection Drug Users.
In addition to standing committees, the HPC also has work groups that address issues related to priority populations and emerging trends in the field of HIV prevention, care and treatment. STD/HIV Division staff members provide staff support to the work groups, which report on their activities at each HPC meeting.
For more information (including but not limited to membership, meeting agendas and minutes), please visit the S.C. HIV Planning Council web site (http://www.schpc.org) or contact Felicia M. Pickering, planning coordinator and HPC Health Department co-chair, at 803-898-1243 or via e-mail at PickerFM@dhec.sc.gov.