Learn About Our HIV Care and Advocacy Services | Equitas Health

We all need support to live a healthy life. That’s the role of our HIV Health and Housing Advocates.

 

 

We’re here to help you …

Connect with a Health Advocate

If you are living with HIV, you may be eligible for healthcare, housing, and other services. Call our nearest location to learn more.

Be the boss of your treatment by becoming an expert on living with HIV.

Take charge of your treatment.

We’ll work together to help you understand:

The ways HIV can be passed from person to person

What happens when meds don’t work as well as they once did

What happens when a different type of HIV gets into your blood

Numbers that show how well your treatment is working:

  • CD4 count: the number of a certain type of cells in a very small amount of your blood.
  • Viral load: the amount of HIV in a very small amount of your blood.

The state of Ohio can charge you with felonious assault if you do not tell a sexual partner that you are living with HIV before you have sex with them.

  • Undetectable means the amount of HIV in your blood is so low that it cannot be found on an HIV test.
  • Untransmittable means you cannot pass HIV to your sexual partners when you are undetectable.

Find the meds that work best for you.

You have choices when it comes to your HIV meds. Understanding those choices will help choose the best meds for you.

When you take your meds every day, you will:

  • Protect your body’s ability to fight germs and sickness.
  • Stop HIV from passing to your sexual partners.

Together, we’ll build a treatment plan that works for you.

 

Take care of the things that can get in the way of your better health.

If you are living with HIV, the virus is one of many things you have to take care of.

People living with HIV* can also get support with:

  • Dental care
  • Mental health counseling
  • Access to food pantries
  • Transportation
  • Housing

If we cannot meet your needs, we’ll help you find someone else that can.

*The policy of Equitas Health is to fully comply with applicable federal, state and local laws, rules and regulations in the area of non-discrimination in employment. Discrimination against employees and applicants due to race, color, religion, sex (including sexual harassment), national origin, disability, age (40 years or older), military and veteran status is prohibited. Violations of this policy will be subject to discipline, up to and including termination.

 

Stay engaged with your care.

We’ll answer your questions about the care you are getting. We can even go with you to medical appointments.

We hope you will see us as a trusted member of your support team. We want to help you thrive and stay in treatment. We start by listening. Your trust is our first concern.

 

Find programs that can pay for the care and services you need.

The Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program and Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) are two government programs that help people living with HIV pay for healthcare and housing. Our Health and Housing Advocates will help you figure out if you can get funds from these programs.

 

The Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program

The Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program – Ryan White for short – is a program of last resort. This means you can only use Ryan White if there are no other ways for you to get or pay for care.

 

Who can get Ryan White?

You can get support from Ryan White if:

  • You are living with HIV.
  • Your pre-tax earnings are the same as – or less than – five times the Federal Poverty Level (FPL).
  • You are an Ohio resident.
  • You meet face-to-face with your health advocate every six months.

Please note, these rules can change at any time. If you have questions, please talk to a Health Advocate at the Equitas Health location closest to you.

What will I need to apply for Ryan White?

Any of these prove that you are living with HIV

  • A positive Western Blot test result
  • Blood work/lab test showing an HIV viral load
  • A letter signed by a medical provider

Any of these prove your earnings:

  • One month of pay stubs
  • Year-to-date pay statements
  • Statement of government assistance
  • A no-income statement.

You must give proof of your earnings every six months to get Ryan White support.

Any of these documents serve as proof of Ohio residency:

  • Valid Ohio driver’s license
  • Ohio Medicaid card
  • A utility bill
  • Mail from the federal/state/local government
  • A copy of a lease

What will Ryan White help pay for?

The services and care that Ryan White will pay for are different from person to person. Overall, Ryan White can help pay for:

  • HIV care, HIV meds, and labs/bloodwork
  • Mental health counseling
  • Housing
  • Dental care up to $2,500 per year
  • Transportation for HIV-related needs
  • Health insurance costs, like premiums & co-pays
  • Other (non-HIV) meds

To find out if you can get Ryan White support, please talk to a Health Advocate at the Equitas Health location nearest you.

Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA)

HOPWA is a Housing and Urban Development (HUD) program. HOPWA pays for Equitas Health’s housing assistance programs.

Who can get help from a HOPWA housing assistance programs?

There are two steps to see if you can get help from HOPWA. An Equitas Health Housing Advocate will help you complete both steps.

Step 1

You have to show proof that:

  • You are living with HIV.
  • Your pre-tax earnings are 80% or less than the median income for your household size in the county where you live.
  • You are a resident of a county where Equitas Health services are available.

Step 2

Once you have completed Step 1, there will be additional guidelines that are different for each HOPWA program.

Our Housing Advocates will work with you to see which HOPWA programs you can use.

What do I need to apply for a HOPWA housing assistance program?

Any of these prove that you are living with HIV

  • A positive Western Blot test result
  • Blood work/lab test showing an HIV viral load
  • A letter signed by a medical provider

Any of these prove your earnings:

  • One month of pay stubs
  • Year-to-date pay statements
  • Statement of government assistance
  • A no-income statement.

Any of these prove that you are an Ohio resident:

  • Valid Ohio driver’s license
  • Ohio Medicaid card
  • A utility bill – such as your gas, electric, or water bill
  • Mail from the federal, state, or local government
  • A copy of a lease

What will HOPWA programs pay for?

What HOPWA will pay for is different for each person. Overall, HOPWA can help pay for:

  • Costs to settle disagreements with landlords
  • Lease education
  • Short-term help paying for rent, utilities, or a security deposit
  • Long-term help paying for rent

 

Should I apply for HOPWA HIV housing assistance?

Are you living with HIV and…

  • Not sure how you will pay next month’s rent?
  • At risk of losing your current housing or experiencing homelessness?
  • Finding it hard to stay in one place for more than a month? A week? A day?

If you answered yes to any of those questions,

  • If you have a Health Advocate, ask them about HOPWA HIV housing assistance.
  • Or call one of our HIV Advocacy locations listed below.

 

Our Health Advocacy Locations

Find our whole person healthcare services at locations throughout Ohio. Is there a service you’re looking for that we don’t offer in your area? That doesn't have to be a barrier to your health! With TeleHealth visits and our Mobile Outreach Vehicle, you have access to quality, affordable, affirming care wherever you are.

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Living Positively

Thriving with HIV

Living Positively

Our Living Positively groups across Ohio offer support and community virtually and in-person for those living with HIV. New diagnosis? Long-term survivor? Struggling to stay in care? Undetectable? All are welcome.

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