Ryan White and Gay Men's HIV/AIDS Awareness Day


Since the beginning of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the majority of HIV cases in the United States have been among gay and bisexual men (men who have sex with men, MSM). In 2018, 69% of HIV diagnoses were among MSM, with 37% of those cases being African American MSM, 30% Hispanic/Latino MSM, and 27% White MSM.

Ryan White and MSM

Of the more than half a million clients served by RWHAP, 47.2% are MSM.

  • 63.7% are from racial/ethnic minority populations
  • 51.7% were living at or below 100% of the federal poverty level
  • 39.9% are 50 and older

MSM RWHAP clients have a slightly higher viral suppression percentage (89.1%) than the national RWHAP average of 88.1%. By race/ethnicity, viral suppression among MSM was lowest among young blacks/African Americans. Learn more in Gay, Bisexual, and Other Men Who Have Sex with Men (MSM) Clients: HRSA’s Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program, 2019, Population Fact Sheet (HRSA, June 2021).

From 2010-2019, RWHAP viral suppression rates have improved significantly for RWHAP clients, overall and for various sub-populations. 

HRSA TA/Training Supporting MSM

HRSA’s HIV/AIDS Bureau has a number of initiatives underway to enhance access to HIV care for MSM in HIV care: social media, outreach, health literacy, and more. Below are recent projects.

Earlier HRSA initiatives to support Black MSM in HIV care include: 

  • His Health: Engaging Black MSM in HIV Care and Prevention provides a compendium of care models, training modules, and resources for enhanced linkage, retention, and engagement strategies to support Black MSM living with HIV. 
  • Well Versed is an online resource and conversation forum for health care providers and Black MSM that presents a simple platform describing what to do before, during, and after a clinic visit. 
  • In It Together Health Literacy Project was designed to improve the capacity of agencies to deliver health-literate HIV services, with a particular focus on health services provided to Black/African American MSM.

Investigating New Models of Care

In 2018, HRSA's SPNS program started a new initiative to support the implementation and evaluation of evidence-informed models of care designed to engage, link, and retain Black MSM in HIV medical care and supportive services. The effort is called Implementation of Evidence-Informed Behavioral Health Models to Improve HIV Health Outcomes for Black Men Who Have Sex With Men.

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