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WHP is aware that effective care for women and girls with HIV requires active engagement with governmental policies that effect this growing population.

We are engaged in policy decisions at the local, state, and national levels. For example, the clinicians at WHP are active leaders in many working groups at the San Francisco Department of Public Health which address the care of HIV-positive women and girls. Clinicians and patients from WHP frequently testify in front of the San Francisco Health Commission and the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.

The research performed by WHP helps inform national policy in many ways, including by providing evidence of effective models of care for this population. In November of 2012, the director of WHP, Dr. Edward Machtinger, spoke at the White House to the newly formed President’s Working Group on the Intersection of HIV/AIDS, Violence against Women and Girls, and Gender-Related Health Disparities.

In August of 2013, WHP convened a high level strategic meeting in Washington, D.C. to discuss ways to effectively implement a response to trauma through the primary care of women and girls. This meeting included a number of senior governmental officials, leading experts in the field of trauma recovery, and HIV-positive community leaders. The meeting was extremely successful, yielding consensus among attendees on the core components of trauma-informed primary care and a strategy for operationalizing this model widely throughout the country.