FILED ON: 12/29/2011

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 3865



The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



In the Year Two Thousand Eleven



An Act relative to the establishment of a commission to modernize HIV/AIDS Prevention and treatment.


Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

SECTION 1.  There shall be a special commission for the purpose of devising a statewide strategy to modernize HIV/AIDS testing, prevention and treatment in the commonwealth.  The commission shall consist of the following members: 2 members appointed by the speaker of the house; 1 member appointed by the house minority leader; 2 members appointed by the senate president; 1 member appointed by the senate minority leader; the commissioner of public health or a designee; the director of the bureau of infectious diseases; the director of the office of HIV/AIDS; the director of the bureau of substance abuse; a member of the massachusetts department of public health statewide consumer advisory board; 3 members representing HIV and AIDS community-based organizations; 3 clinicians with expertise in HIV epidemiology or research; and 1 representative from the massachusetts medical society.

SECTION 2.  The commission shall develop a comprehensive plan to address the goals of increasing routine HIV testing while ensuring patient privacy, reducing the number of people who become infected with HIV, increasing access to care and optimizing health outcomes for people living with HIV, and reducing HIV-related health disparities in the commonwealth, as called for by the national HIV/AIDS strategy, including a consensus budget proposal, capable of being implemented over a 5 year period, with a focus as follows:-

(a)To ensure the collaboration of relevant agencies and organizations in the commonwealth involved with testing, prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS;

(b)To review the goals and recommendations of the national HIV/AIDS strategy and analyze how effective current programs, services, and policies of the commonwealth are at meeting these goals;

(c)To review results of surveillance data, including hepatitis c co-infection rates, substance use, and recent research developments including pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis, microbicidal gels, and deployment of rapid testing, and determine the best way to utilize these new tools and data in prevention programs across the state, which may include additional research or surveillance carried out by the department of public health in partnership with relevant community-based organizations and health providers;

(d)To review research and data on HIV-related health disparities in the commonwealth, including the department of public health reports, "an added burden: the impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic on communities of color in massachusetts," and, “the health of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender persons in massachusetts,” and to specifically address the needs of these populations in the comprehensive plan; and

(e)To carry out an analysis of the financial and organizational feasibility of utilizing existing state resources for implementing a comprehensive plan to reduce HIV/AIDS and ensure that the state maximizes its ability to leverage outside resources from federal, municipal, and private sources.

SECTION 3.  The commission shall be established within 90 days of passage of this act, shall hold at least one public hearing, and shall submit its findings and recommendations to the joint committee on public health on or before december 31, 2012.