AUSTIN, TX—April 15th, 2020—AIDS Services of Austin (ASA) today announced that they are now part of Vivent Health, a national HIV health care provider committed to serving everyone affected by HIV/AIDS through comprehensive, integrated prevention, care and treatment programs and services. With locations in Colorado, Missouri, Wisconsin and now Texas, Vivent Health has the scale and resources to enhance care for the Austin community. Current ASA board of directors will join the Vivent Health local advisory council.
As the newest member of Vivent Health, the Austin location will remain committed to providing the only integrated HIV/AIDS care in Austin and will significantly expand programs and services to build healthier lives for Central Texans at risk for and living with HIV/AIDS. The expansion includes building an in-house pharmacy, adding five new mental health therapists, increasing food pantry services to five days a week and serving 1000 new patients. The HIV Medical Home model, for which Vivent Health is nationally renowned, is an integrated, patient-centered model of care that helps people with HIV live long, healthy lives.
“ASA has an impressive record of providing effective treatment and prevention programs and services for people affected by HIV/AIDS in Austin,” said Michael J. Gifford, President and Chief Executive Officer of Vivent Health. “We are excited to join forces with them to expand and evolve the services they currently offer so together we can deliver the best outcomes for the people in Austin. We are stronger, and together, will help people with HIV thrive in pursuit of our vision of a world without AIDS.”
As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds, becoming Vivent Health has allowed Austin programs and staff to act with agility, ensuring the delivery of essential services at a time when they are needed most. While the pandemic has placed added stress on our patients and clients, Vivent Health has made efforts to relieve that stress via our radical response efforts that ensure the delivery of essential services for everyone affected by HIV. Although we have modified operations, we continue to find solutions to deliver care, treatment and prevention services to all our patients and clients.
“We are excited to bring the HIV Medical Home model of care to the Austin community so the people we serve can thrive,” said Paul Scott, former Chief Executive Officer for ASA and now Vice President, Texas for Vivent Health. “Honestly, we couldn’t have joined the Vivent Health family at a better time.”
“Our current programs and services will increase in the months to come, including offering a pharmacy and expanded PrEP services which will allow us to stay committed to the health and well-being of anyone impacted by HIV/AIDS in central Texas well into the future.”
Now a part of Vivent Health, ASA staff working under modified COVID-19 operations were able to recently secure housing for someone living with HIV who was discharged from a hospital so that he could continue to focus on adhering to his HIV medications. Under the Vivent Health COVID-19 Radical
Response, virtual work solutions and program mobilization are allowing staff to continue meeting the needs of clients in difficult circumstances. The organization is also able to make investments in infrastructure and technology to ensure access to services, and has made a commitment to continue paying all employees during the pandemic, ensuring the team can remain dynamic and effective in allocating staff resources where they are most needed.
In recent years, Austin has seen an increase in the demand for programs and services as a record number of people are living with HIV/AIDS. In Austin, there are currently 6,063 people living with HIV/AIDS and 17 percent of people living with HIV who do not know their status, according to AIDSVu. In addition, one out of six people living with HIV in Austin are not getting the care they need.
Vivent Health currently has 15 locations in four states: Colorado, Missouri, Wisconsin and now Texas. Mike Gifford will continue to serve as President and Chief Executive Officer of Vivent Health, and Paul Scott will serve as Vice President, Texas, continuing to lead the organization’s response to HIV/AIDS in the region.
People living with or at-risk for HIV/AIDS in Austin, donors, and other public health stakeholders who would like to learn more about ASA becoming Vivent Health can visit www.viventhealth.org