East Bay Getting to Zero (EBGTZ) collaborative efforts started in 2011 with the East Bay linkage and retention network. Since then, the EBGTZ linkage and retention working group has created and implemented rapid, warm hand-off linkage and data-to-care processes. During that time, Alameda County HIV linkage rates have increased from 70% in 2012 to 78% in 2016 and viral load suppression rates have increased from 36% in 2012 to 68% in 2016.
In October 2015, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf signed on to the international Fast-Track Cities Initiative, committing to attain the UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets by 2020: 90% of all people living with HIV will know their HIV status; 90% of all people with diagnosed HIV infection will receive sustained antiretroviral therapy (ART); and 90% of all HIV-diagnosed people receiving sustained ART will achieve viral suppression. The first Fast-Track Cities community town hall meeting was convened by Dr. Marsha Martin in March 2017 and inspired the formation of a regional Getting to Zero effort including both Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.
The EBGTZ Steering Committee formed in August 2017. Since then, its membership has grown to over 30 active members. The Advisory Board, Advisory Board Chair and Project Director have been voted in by consensus.
The EBGTZ PrEP working group conducted the first regional PrEP data collection in September 2017 and plans to conduct an East Bay PrEP disparities analysis in 2020.
In 2019, EBGTZ transformed from an all-volunteer organization to a fiscally-sponsored project of Community Initiatives and was awarded seed funding from Levi Strauss Foundation and Kaiser Community Benefits. EBGTZ then updated the mission and vision statements, hired part-time core team staff, launched the EBGTZ Youth Program, Youth Advisory Board, Youth ‘Zine Project, had a complete rebranding, and held its community-wide public launch at Oakland Pride in September 2019. The EBGTZ website, including a comprehensive and fully searchable East Bay HIV services directory (the first of its kind) is on target for public launch at the EBGTZ World AIDS Day event on December 10, 2019.
Alameda County was named one of the 48 “hot spot” counties in the US for the Federal Ending the HIV Epidemic, launched in January 2019. As funding and other resources come to our region from the federal initiative, EBGTZ will evolve and coordinate with the Ending the HIV Epidemic initiative.
Summary of international, national, state and regional initiatives connected with East Bay Getting to Zero:
-International: Fast-Track Cities (City of Oakland has signed on)
-National: Ending the HIV Epidemic (Alameda County is a “hot spot”)
-State: Ending the Epidemics (HIV/HCV/STDs combined)
-Local: East Bay Getting to Zero (Alameda and Contra Costa Counties)