Executive Committee Meeting Minutes May 18, 2023


By Zoom

3:05 – 4:40pm

Members Present: Graham Harriman (Governmental Co-chair), Dorella Walters (Community Co-chair), Billy Fields (Finance Officer), Saqib Altaf, Ronnie Fortunato, Marya Gilborn, Charmaine Graham, Steve Hemraj, Matthew Lesieur, David Martin, Freddy Molano, MD, Julian Palmer, Guadalupe Dominguez Plummer, Claire Simon (for Joan Edwards), Marcelo Maia Soares, Marcy Thompson

Members Absent: Emma Kaywin, Jeff Natt

Staff Present: NYC DOHMH: David Klotz, Doienne Saab, Melanie Lawrence, Scott Spiegler, Johanna Acosta, Kimbirly Mack; Public Health Solutions: Rosemarie Santos; Joan Corbisiero (Parliamentarian)

Agenda Item #1: Welcome/Introductions/Minutes/Public Comment

Mr. Harriman and Mr. Fields opened the meeting followed by a roll call and a moment of silence.  The minutes from the April 20, 2023 meeting were approved with no changes.

Agenda Item #2: NY EMA Needs Assessment

Ms. Thompson introduced the draft EMA Needs Assessment (NA), approved last week by the Needs Assessment Committee (NAC).  She reviewed the HRSA definition and requirements and noted that the previous NA was done in 2014, and like this one, was a collaboration between the NAC and DOHMH.  The 2023 NA has four main sections: 1) Epi Profile, 2) Resource Inventory, 3) Profile of Provider Capacity, and 4) Assessment of Service Needs/gaps.  The timeline and process for development of the NA was also presented. 

Ms. Saab presented the components of the NA.  The Epi Profile highlights key HIV epidemiological data from the EMA and examines the HIV-related inequities experienced by PWH and populations disproportionately impacted by HIV.  Details of the profile were presented, along with key takeaways, such as that poverty is linked to higher proportions of people being newly diagnosed with HIV and poor HIV-related outcomes.  Four recommendations from this section were presented, such as capturing relevant data for all priority populations and explore the social and structural determinants of health. 

The Resource Inventory section highlights the RWHAP-funded and other care providers delivering and promoting core medical and support services to address gaps in the HIV care continuum and helps PWH address barriers to viral suppression.  The NA found that there is an increasing need for health education, risk reduction, housing services, and medical case management services in the Bronx and Queens.  Recommendations include increased support for recipients to offer comprehensive and integrated services, and interventions to support providers in adopting and expanding anti-racism and anti-stigma practices. 

The Provider Capacity section, based on a comprehensive AETC survey, identifies areas for improvements in workforce capacity, gain knowledge of the workforce (e.g., clinical competency, service efficiency) and defines needed resources.  One finding is that respondents who have worked in the HIV field for less than 10 years reported their level of expertise as fair or adequate.  Recommendations include that employers should enhance recruitment and retention strategies to increase the representation of communities that are disproportionately impacted by HIV, and that the RWPA program should provide engaging, innovative, and interactive training methodologies to increase provider HIV knowledge and strengthen care delivery.

The Assessment of Service Needs and Gapssection highlights the identified service needs and barriers, provider capacity and capability, and other data such as service utilization, to determine gaps in care by service category and location among specific populations.  Recommendations include increased staffing to expand the number of case managers to assist clients in accessing services and streamlined referral services.

The NA identified a number of “parking lot” items to be addressed in the future, such as HIV outcomes data, a list of RW Part B providers, and additional workforce data.  Mr. Fields expressed the importance of highlighting the needs of PWH with disabilities, who face specific burdens and barriers to care.  In the ensuing discussion, it was noted that the parking lot was for issues, populations, etc. where there was not enough data, but are next on the agenda for the NAC to address.  There was an agreement to change the term “Parking Lot” to “Emerging Items Identified for Future Action” to stress that they have a high priority. 

A motion was made, seconded and approved 7Y-3N to accept the NY EMA Needs Assessment as presented.

Agenda Item #3: Council Co-chairs Report

Mr. Harriman reported that the “Super Committee”, comprised of planning body leadership from throughout NY State to monitor the implementation of the Statewide Integrated Plan, will next meet on June 20th.  He then discussed a letter he sent last week concerning Planning Council-Recipient relations to Deputy Commissioner for Disease Control Celia Quinn (who oversees the Council staff).  Challenges in a council-recipient relationship are baked into the legislation given the differing roles and responsibilities, but the two parties need to work collaboratively.  The Executive Committee, in their site visit meeting with HRSA earlier this week, expressed concerns about the Recipient around communications, data, community engagement and other issues.  Mr. Harriman reported that he is working to secure technical assistance from HRSA to help strengthen and improve the relationship.  Also, he will work to include additional items in the Council-Recipient Memorandum of Agreement to ensure that all current processes continue (e.g., Council participation in the CHAIN review team). 

Mr. Harriman also announced that he will retire in the fall with his last day on October 20th.  The advance notice was given to allow DOHMH enough time to recruit a replacement and address the issues discussed above.  There will be a special meeting of Executive Committee members (no Recipient staff) later this month to start planning for the transition.  He is also hoping that there will be new synergies with the Division of Disease Control around policy, community engagement and procurement for Council services. 

Agenda Item #4: Public Comment

Mr. Maia reported that HRSA did not take a position during the site visit meeting on community advisory boards or the Council’s former PWA Advisory Group.  He expressed that these are two important avenues for consumer engagement.

There being no further comment, the meeting was adjourned.