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Priorities to End the Epidemics of HIV, Viral Hepatitis, STIs, and Overdose: Year in Review



Policy Center Research Products and Dissemination

To learn more about the Centers and to view the policy briefs, publications, data visualizations, and other products resulting from their researcher, please visit the CHRP support website dedicated to broadly disseminating their work. The website is

Policy Research

Supporting timely, objective and rigorously conducted research and policy analysis.

August 1, 2023:  CHRP and TRDRP are pleased to announce joint funding of a new Policy Research Center, The California Center for HIV Syndemic Policy Research (CalCenSyn) led by Dr. Laramie Smith at UC San Diego, Dr. Orlando Harris at UC San Francisco, and Dr. Sabrina Smiley at San Diego State University.  According to Dr. Smiley, CalCenSyn’s “mission is to expose the root causes of HIV and syndemic conditions such as nicotine dependence and sociostructural barriers to treatment and serve as a leading community-academic collaborative center that pushes boundaries in HIV policy and practice by focusing research on substance use and related syndemic drivers to achieve health equity in all California communities".  Dr. Smith added “What is exciting about this new policy center is that our communities will co-develop and co-lead research to change policies through collaboration while keeping our focus on the drivers of HIV and substance use-related inequities, not just the virus itself…Ending the HIV epidemic requires a bold, comprehensive, and innovative approach that is community-engaged and scientifically driven.”  RGPO congratulates this innovative team on their forward-thinking and holistic approach to moving toward a healthier California for all.

 From left:  Co-Principal Investigators Dr. Sabrina Smiley, Dr. Laramie Smith, and Dr. Orlando Harris

From left:  Co-Principal Investigators Dr. Sabrina Smiley, Dr. Laramie Smith, and Dr. Orlando Harris

CHRP funds three HIV Policy Research Centers comprised of multi-disciplinary teams working in partnership with consumers, advocates, and policymakers. The goal of the Centers is to support timely and impactful policy analyses that are responsive to policy maker and other stakeholder needs in California and that strengthen local, state and national capacity to enact HIV-relevant policies informed by objective and rigorous research. The Centers focus on rapid response research completed within a 6-month timeframe on policy issues that arise during the active grant period and through stakeholder engagement processes.

To learn more about the HIV Policy Centers work and access their research publications and other resources, please visit the CHPRC website.


About the Centers

 Southern California HIV/AIDS Policy Research Center

  • Lead PI: Ian Holloway, UC Los Angeles 
  • Center Partners: UC Los Angeles, UC San Diego, UC Riverside, APLA Health, LA LGBT Center, and TruEvolution
  • Award Total: $2,000,000
  • Abstract: 

    Specific Aims. The Southern California HIV/AIDS Policy Research Center (SCHPRC) brings together academic and community experts to: (1) identify emerging HIV policy issues; (2) conduct objective, rigorous rapid response research to address HIV policy issues; and (3) bring relevant and timely policy research findings to bear on policy issues.

    Background. For over a decade, SCHPRC has led an academic-community policy research team in California, the state with the largest number of people living with HIV. SCHPRC’s next phase will include new partners from San Diego, San Bernardino and Riverside Counties. This will help ensure greater representation from Southern California and will cultivate new leadership.

    Methods. Community and academic partners identify and prioritize important HIV policy issues through engaging consumers, providers, administrators, and policymakers. Academic partners use appropriate research methods to complete rapid response research in a 2-week to 6-month timeframe. Results are packaged into easily digestible research products (e.g. policy briefs, fact sheets) to maximize distribution. Community partners hold primary responsibility for placing SCHPRC research in the hands of decision-makers. SCHPRC will also design and implement an HIV Policy Early Warning System (EWS) targeting statewide healthcare and social service providers addressing HIV, hepatitis C and sexual transmitted diseases. EWS will help us to collect data on an ongoing basis to better understand drivers of the HIV epidemic, including the impact of stigma, poverty, homelessness, food insecurity, and criminal justice involvement especially among Queer, Black, Indigenous and people of color (QBIPOC).

    Impact. Policy impact is based on successful distribution of research products that inform ongoing debates that impact Californians living with and at risk for HIV. Through maintaining an active social media presence, fresh content on the CHPRC website, and regularly dispatched email newsletters, SCHPRC will demonstrate growth in becoming a leading source for HIV policy research in California and beyond.

Northern California HIV Policy Research Center

  • Lead PI: Emily Arnold, UC San Francisco
  • Center Partners: UC San Francisco, UC Berkeley, San Francisco AIDS Foundation
  • Award Total: $2,000,000
  • Abstract: 

    We propose a continuation of the Northern California HIV Policy Research Center (HPRC), which conducts research and evaluation to inform policies and programs that respond to HIV and its associated epidemics in California. We represent a community-academic partnership that works as a team to identify emerging and timely HIV-related policy issues affecting California, formulate appropriate research questions and implement innovative high impact research relevant to those issues, and disseminate findings back to key health policy stakeholders, and academic, clinical, and community audiences to help end HIV and its associated epidemics in California. Our two academic partners, the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) and the University of California Berkeley (UCB), will engage with our community-based partner, the San Francisco AIDS Foundation (SFAF), to carry out rapid response research projects, which typically take place over a six-month time period. The academic UCSF/UCB team includes four investigators with training and expertise in HIV policy analysis, psychology, anthropology, epidemiology, and behavioral economics. The SFAF team, based at an organization serving those at highest risk for HIV, hosts three investigators who are knowledgeable about emerging policy trends that would affect HIV prevention and care at the federal, state, and local levels. We will identify topics for rapid response research through conferring with the organizing committee of the Ending the Epidemics statewide initiative and by convening targeted stakeholder meetings. After we ascertain the most pressing emergent issues, we will design feasible rapid response research projects that can be conducted within 6 months, and then broadly disseminated. Although all HPRC partners collaborate throughout the rapid response project cycle, they play slightly different roles. The academic investigators at UCSF and UC Berkeley focus on research design, data collection and analysis, and dissemination of products that describe the findings. The community partners at SFAF ensure that findings are actively utilized in policymaking efforts and broadly disseminated. Together we have the experience, skills, and strong partnership to produce actionable policy research to help alleviate HIV and its related health conditions in California.

Policy Center Archive 

Information about previous policy center awards and to read the publications resulting from those awards can be accessed in the archive here