Health professionals from Christiana Care participated in the 10th annual Saving Our Sisters, a one-day conference in acknowledgement of National Women & Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day sponsored by the Beautiful Gate Outreach Center, on March 7. Speakers and participants at the event included: Elizabeth Sushereba, CNM; OB-GYN resident Victoria Greenberg, D.O.; Lisa Phillips, M.D.; Arlene Smalls, M.D.; Health Ambassadors Venus Jones and Shirley Ibrahimovic; and Bernadette Baker, RN, of the Cardiovascular Prevention Program.
“This day was so powerful,” said Patricia Lincoln, RN, BSN, ACRN, site director of the Christiana Care Delaware local performance site of the Pennsylvania Mid-Atlantic AIDS Education Training Center. Lincoln is on the planning committee for the annual event, which was attended by more than 250 teen and adult women this year. “Each year we see families attend — great grandmothers, grandmothers, mothers and daughters. Some have attended since the beginning and have remained healthy as a result.”
The event included age-appropriate workshops with discussions on the importance of a positive self-image, self-worth, empowerment, healthy relationships, HIV prevention and the importance of medical treatment for women and girls who are living with HIV.
Janice Heinssen, FNP-BC, AAHIVS, a nurse practitioner with Christiana Care’s HIV Program, was honored with this year’s Queen Award, which recognizes a woman who has shown dedicated leadership and advocacy in the fight against HIV.
The Christiana Care HIV Program has partnered with Beautiful Gate Outreach Center since 2005 to integrate HIV medical care into Beautiful Gate’s faith-based HIV testing and outreach program. Currently, the clinical team from the HIV Program provides medical care at Beautiful Gate to more than 50 patients.