Children's Hospital AIDS Program
The Children's Hospital AIDS Program (CHAP) at Boston Children's Hospital provides the following services:
HIV counseling and testing: At the initial visit, after informed consent is obtained, we conduct confidential HIV counseling and antibody testing. Our senior staff report HIV test results to the child's parent or legal guardian and, with the appropriate consent, to the patient's primary and/or referring physician. We provide
follow-up testing and services as necessary.
- Clinical care and case management: With the patient's primary provider, we deliver ongoing clinical care, provide case management and make referrals to a large geographical service area. We provide medical, nursing and social services to monitor and treat patients, educate parents about home care and provide the family with all of the appropriate support.
- Outreach and Massachusetts Community AIDS Resource Enhancement (MassCARE) Program: We have established partnerships with community health centers in Massachusetts neighborhoods where the rates of AIDS- and HIV-infected women are high. The goals of MassCARE are to introduce highly specialized services into the community, increase access to HIV clinical trials for women and children and reduce the number of trips patients need to make to receive specialized services.
- Education: We meet with parents, foster parents and adolescents to discuss topics related to AIDS, such as possible symptoms, risky behaviors, such as IV drug use and unprotected sex.
- Mental health services: We provide a multicultural team of social workers to address the psychological needs of children and families. We offer crisis intervention, psychosocial assessments and ongoing counseling to help patients and families deal with coping, disclosure, depression, behavioral problems, addiction and bereavement.
- Clinical drug and vaccine trials: Children's is one of 24 pediatric institutions nationwide conducting research of investigational drugs and vaccines for both primary HIV therapy and prevention and treatment of infections. CHAP is also involved in several therapeutic and perinatal prevention vaccine studies.
- Adolescent HIV services: We provide adolescent HIV services both at Children's and in the community. We see HIV-infected and/or high risk adolescents for counseling, testing, treatment and clinical trials. In addition, the Boston HAPPENS Program provides outreach to high risk, HIV positive, homeless and/or street youth by professional and trained peer leaders.