Morehouse School of Medicine
Gilead Focus Grant




Project Leaders and Champions: Michelle Nichols, MD, MS, Assistant Dean for Clinical Affairs and Kenya Davis, JD, MDiv, Project Manager


Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM), located in Atlanta, was established in 1975 as the first medical school at a historically black college and university. MSM was ranked by an Annals of Internal Medicine study, “The Social Mission of Medical Education: Ranking the Schools,” as the number-one medical school for meeting a social mission and graduating physicians who practice primary care and work in underserved areas. Additionally, over 95% of family medicine residents go on to practice in GA and under-represented areas. This distinction positions MSM as a key influencer in their ability to shape and influence the HIV and HCV screening habits of future caregivers for those most vulnerable to HIV and co-morbidities.


Morehouse’s goal is to increase current HIV testing rate to 67% up from 4%, across both satellite sites through an opt-out, integrated, and routine screening approach. It is anticipated that from the 9,375 that are offered testing, at least 66% (6,250) will accept the offer. The team projects a seropositivity of 1% based on the high-prevalence areas of both satellite locations, and intends to refer positive patients in-house for treatment.


Birth-cohort HCV offers and screening will be similarly integrated into the intake process. The team projects to screen 50% (2,500) of all patients born between 1945 and 1965 for HCV utilizing conventional serum. Electronic health record (EHR) modifications, policy changes that include standing order and medical authorization modification, and provider training will drive implementation of the program and support a sustained effort.


As a FOCUS deliverable, the MSM team will also employ dual mechanisms to educate resident and student learners as well as existing and established physicians on closing the gap between existing clinical practice and current HIV screening recommendations. MSM has an extensive Community Provider Network (CPN) that will allow the team to access providers that routinely care for the medically underserved. The program will support the development of Continuing Medical Education Credits and training workshops for members of the CPN. The initiative will also integrate residency and medical student education into the Culture, Respect, Assess/Affirm, Sensitivity, and Humility (“CRASH”) training model to help educate future providers on the federal guidelines and real-world applications.


Quick Facts:
Anticipated HIV tests: 6,250
Anticipated HIV offers: 9,375
Anticipated HIV positives: 1%
Anticipated HIV linkage to care: 95%
Anticipated HCV tests: 2,500