Community News

World AIDS Day is December 7, 2014

MEMPHIS, TN –On Monday, December 7, 2014, the Shelby County Health Department is collaborating with a number of community partners to observe the 26th  World AIDS Day.  The theme for World AIDS Day 2014 is ‘Getting to Zero: zero new HIV infections. Zero discrimination. Zero AIDS related deaths’

As of 2013, 26,428 Tennessee residents were reported to have been infected with HIV, and Shelby County accounts for approximately 38 percent of those cases. In 2013 there were 6,024 People Living with HIV Disease in Shelby County.

The only way to know if you have HIV is to be tested. In recognition of World AIDS Day, during the month of December the Shelby County Health Department will offer free confidential HIV counseling and rapid testing the month of December. We will also offer free STD treatments for the first two weeks in the month of December at the following locations:

Packer Clinic

814 Jefferson Avenue, Room 221

Memphis, TN 38105


Cawthon  Public Health Clinic

1000 Haynes Street

Memphis, TN 38114

Between the hours of 8:00 A.M. and 2:30 P.M.

Preliminary results available in one hour

The Shelby County Health Department in collaboration with Shelby County School District and Well Child Incorporated will conduct STD Screenings for students attending theschools listed below:

Monday, November 17, 2014                 Sheffield High School                                      8:00AM– 2:00PM

Tuesday, November 18, 2014                Westwood High School                                    8:00AM – 2:00PM

Wednesday, November 19, 2014           East High School                                             8:00AM – 2:00 PM

Thursday, November 20, 2014              North Side School                                            8:00AM – 2:00PM

Friday, November 21, 2014                   Wooddale High                                                8:00AM – 2:00PM

*Monday, December 1, 2014                 City Hall                                                           10:00AM – 2:00PM

Also in observance of World AIDS Day 2014, the Shelby County Health Department, in collaboration with the Shelby County Unified School District will host its’ annual World AIDS Day Program:

Monday, December 1, 2014

 12:30 P.M. – 1:30 P.M.

Wooddale High School Auditorium

5151 Scottsdale Avenue, Memphis, TN 38118

This annual World AIDS Day event is a unique opportunity for local community based HIV/AIDS service groups and organizations to increase awareness about HIV/AIDS and reinforce the need for HIV prevention activities and programs. The media is invited to attend.

The Health Department will also announce its’ “Light of Hope” Award winners at the ceremony. The Light of Hope Award is given to an individual, an organization and business that have consistently exhibited a strong desire to assist and/or support HIV/AIDS education, prevention and care efforts in Shelby County.

For more information about planned World AIDS Day activities, call the Shelby County Health Department’s Infectious Disease Section at (901) 222-9428, Monday through Friday during normal business hours.

* In collaboration with Representative G.A. Hardaway at the Hall of Mayor’s, 160 Main Street, Memphis TN.

2nd Annual Saving Ourselves Symposium

This year The Red Door Foundation will host an exciting symposium planned that includes different activities involving presenters from various interdisciplinary fields, including HIV/AIDS and STD fields on both local and national levels. Speakers include:  Dr. Mitchell Wharton (University of Rochester), Daniel D. Driffin (University of Connecticut), Michelle Allen (Georgia Department of Public Health), Dr. Leo Moore (Yale University School of Medicine), DaShawn Usher (New York Blood Center- Project ACHIEVE), Jonathan Paul Lucas (FHI360), Noël Gordon (Human Rights Campaign), Anthony Roberts, Jr. (ARJR, LLC), Justin Tyson (The Academia Society, Incorporated), Steven Martinez (AVAC), Dr. Shanell McGoy (Tennessee Department of Health), Marvell L. Terry, II (The Red Door Foundation, Inc.)  and Blake Rowley (National Association of State and Territorial AIDS Directors).  To see a complete list of confirmed speakers and their bios, click here.

Thursday, June 5 and Friday, June 6 will be the Black Gay Men’s Technical Assistance Meeting. The technical assistance workshops are designed for traditional and non-traditional stakeholders working with Black Gay Men in a effort to improve their overall health outcomes.  Workshops include topics such as Culture Sensitivity, Faith & Black Gay Men, Bio-medical Prevention,  Mental Health, Exploring Sub-cultures and Building Rapport with Black Gay Men, to name a few.

Plenary discussions during the 2014 Saving Ourselves Symposium will be hosted by Young Black Gay Men’s Leadership Initiative, AVACIntimacy & Colour and Gilead Pharmaceuticals. SpeakOut will be the topic for the Twitter Town Hall Meeting on Friday night, June 6, 2014.  SpeakOut will convey the need for black gay/bi-sexual and same gender loving men to speak out about their relationships, their health and for their communities in the South.  This discussion will be interactive by using #SpeakOut on twitter.

Saturday morning will involve community level workshops on topics such as PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis), Finance Management, Interpersonal Relationships, Spirituality and Sexuality,  Self-Care, Social Media Activism  and Leading with Passion.

Sponsors for the 2014 Saving Ourselves Symposium are Southland Park Gaming and Racing, Tennessee AETC, James Anderson Lester, King Rose Consulting, Positively Aware, WellsConsulting, Family Safety Center,  and the Human Rights Campaign. Sponsorship opportunities and vendor space is still available. Contact to request information.

Deadline to book rooms at the host hotel under the conference rate of $91.00 is Friday, May 16, 2014.  For Lodging/ Venue, Registration and Theme Information visit  

Media Arts Competition Celebration and Health Forum

April 10 is National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day (NYHAAD), a day dedicated to motivating people to invest in young people’s health, education and leadership, and take action in the fight against AIDS. Almost 30 percent of new cases of HIV in Memphis come from people ages 15-24, so it’s important now more than ever to educate the young people in our community about this disease. In honor of National Youth HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, the Memphis Ryan White program is partnering with SCS, St. Jude, the University of Tennessee and the Shelby County Health Department to host a Media Arts Competition Celebration and Health forum on Thursday, April 10, 2014 at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) Alumni Center, 800 Madison Avenue,

Memphis, TN from 9:00am to 1:00pm. Memphis-area students will help shed light on the HIV/AIDS epidemic by incorporating the theme of “Know Now, Live Longer” into artwork, music or writing. First-, second- and third-place awards will be given in each art category (Visual, Media and Interactive Arts). The winners’ art will be incorporated into the regional “Know Now. Live Longer.” HIV awareness campaign, and the winners will receive a gift certificate and plaque. UTHSC will also award three paid internships to the winners.

Ending the Stigma Surrounding HIV/AIDS

The Memphis Flyer reports on the profound presence of HIV/AIDS in the southern United States, particularly among African-Americans. In 2012, 82 percent of the 8,000 people infected with HIV in Memphis were black. Dorcas Young, the Ryan White Program’s administrator for Shelby County, says that ending the stigma of HIV through awareness can aid in prevention and lower numbers of new cases. “We know that we can essentially prevent HIV if we can get everybody who is positive the treatment they need. But if people are scared to go get treatment, because of what folks are going to say, it’s this terrible cycle.” Read more and join us in the fight to end the HIV epidemic in Memphis

Homelessness and HIV in Memphis: Survey Results

Only 29 percent of 109 surveyed homeless and transitionally housed persons living in Memphis shelters has had an HIV test in the past year, despite 67 percent of participants reporting having engaged in at least one HIV-risk behavior. These statistics and many others are the recent results of a survey conducted by the Shelby County Health Department, University of Memphis School of Public Health and Christ Community Health Services to identify health indicators and HIV-risk behaviors among this underserved population in order to support behavioral interventions and reduce the number of new HIV infections. Click here to read the full report.