AIDS Action participates in numerous coalitions, working to advance our statewide public policy agenda and issues that support our mission. See below for a list of coalitions on which we serve:
911/Good Samaritan Coalition
The 911 Good Samaritan Coalition, chaired by the Massachusetts Organization for Addiction Recovery (MOAR), brings groups together in support of legislation that would provide limited protections from prosecution to people who call 911 while witnessing (or, if possible, while experiencing) a drug overdose. Some of the Good Samaritan bills filed this session also provide protections for those who prescribe, administer or use overdose reversal drug Narcan. AIDS Action has played a leadership role in this coalition because we understand that granting limited immunity from criminal charges of drug possession when an overdose victim or witness seeks medical assistance will save lives. Removing a major obstacle for the prevention of fatal overdoses – namely the fear of police involvement — will result in more people seeking emergency medical assistance and, therefore, fewer fatal overdoses.
The ACT!! Coalition
The Affordable Care Today (ACT!!) Coalition is a broad-based coalition of community and health advocacy organizations, labor unions, faith groups, doctors, hospitals, community health centers, legal services organizations, public health advocates and consumers. Established in 2005, ACT!! supports implementation of Chapter 58, the landmark Massachusetts health reform law, in a way that honors the coalition’s five principles: MassHealth restoration and expansion; cost relief to moderate-income working families (including sliding scale subsidies for private insurance); fair payment rates for doctors, hospitals and other providers of MassHealth services; meaningful shared responsibility; fair and sustainable funding.
Campaign for Better Care
The Massachusetts Campaign for Better Care, coordinated by Health Care for All, brings together consumer groups who support health care payment reform. The coalition advocates for global payments and patient-centered care as a means to both improve health care outcomes and reign in health care costs. The coalition supports a health care structure that delivers more for patients and protects the most vulnerable among us, such as the disabled, the chronically ill, immigrants low and moderate income people, seniors and children. AIDS Action is a member of the Campaign for Better care because we know that improving the quality of health care can drive down costs such as co-pays and premiums and allow all Massachusetts residents, including those living with HIV, to get the care they need.
Disability Advocates Advancing our Healthcare Rights
Disability Advocates Advancing our Healthcare Rights (DAAHR) is a cross disability committee comprised of disability, elder and healthcare advocates. The coalition was formed in response to a demonstration project currently being developed by MassHealth (Massachusetts’ Medicaid office) to integrate care and combine Medicare and Medicaid funding for those dually eligible for both Medicaid and Medicare. By combining Medicare and Medicaid funding, MassHealth is proposing to offer a broader menu of services that will better meet the needs of the duals population in the most cost effective way. DAAHR is working with MassHealth to ensure that the demonstration project includes protections for enrollees that area consistent with the following principles: cultural competence; person centered care; prevention services; voluntary active participant enrollment; a delivery system that includes medical homes and a broad network of providers; a consumer voice incorporated into the design, implementation and monitoring of the program; and payment methods that reward increased quality of health outcomes.
Massachusetts AIDS Policy Task Force
AIDS Action also coordinates the Massachusetts AIDS Policy Task Force (“MAPTF”), which is primarily operated as an email “listserve.” AIDS Action periodically sends out alerts to MAPTF members regarding pending AIDS-related legislative, budget and policy issues and coordinates organized responses to these issues when necessary. Participants work to ensure the passage of laws and policies and state and federal funding that support the strongest possible programs for education, prevention, care and treatment.
MCAS (Massachusetts Coalition for Addiction Services)
The Massachusetts Coalition for Addiction Services is a statewide group of advocacy organizations that have come together to support the expansion of state funding for addiction prevention, treatment and recovery support services, and increased access to these services for people with alcohol and other addictive disorders.
Massachusetts Patient Advocacy Alliance
The Massachusetts Patient Advocacy Alliance is a coalition of patients, caregivers, medical professionals, and community groups who support safe access to medical marijuana for seriously and terminally ill patients in Massachusetts. Its goal is to pass legislation that would allow patients in Massachusetts safe access to medical marijuana when it is recommended by their doctors.
Massachusetts Viral Hepatitis Coalition (MVHC)
The Massachusetts Viral Hepatitis Coalition, organized and chaired by AIDS Actions, is a collaboration of organizations, providers and consumers working together to increase awareness of viral hepatitis and support for programs addressing the needs of those living with or at risk for viral hepatitis through education, advocacy and coalition building.
The Prevention First works to promote a comprehensive approach to reducing the rate of unintended pregnancies and reversing the increase in sexually transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS in the state. The coalition is comprised of organizations in Massachusetts Campaign (including NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts, Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Teen Pregnancy Alliance and the American Civil Liberties Union, among others) who are concerned with the health of young people, women, and families. It supports comprehensive health and sexuality education in all public schools and increased state funding of teen pregnancy prevention programs and comprehensive family planning services.
Project ABLE is a statewide coalition advocating for state funding to sustain a wide range of social services for people infected with, affected by or at risk for HIV/AIDS. The coalition’s goal is to ensure adequate state funding is available to the statewide network of AIDS service organizations, providing a continuum of care to clients and their families. AIDS Action coordinates our state budget advocacy with Project ABLE.