ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOT) has announced that New York’s seventh annual “Ending the Epidemic” (ETE) Summit will be held virtually Tuesday and Wednesday. The theme for this year is “Collaborating for Change: Partnering for Health Equity.” Those looking to participate can register online.

“This year’s Ending the Epidemic Summit is a time to remember the lives lost to HIV and AIDS,” State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett said. “Decades of research, education, and advancements in treatment are saving lives every day. As we turn toward the future, we must recognize the challenges we still face, and the work that still must be done to finally end the epidemic.”

This year’s summit will feature a presentation, followed by a Q & A session, from the acting director of the AIDS Institute, Joseph Kerwin, and Dr. Sarah Braunstein, assistant commissioner of the Bureau of Hepatitis, HIV and Sexually Transmitted Infections, NYCDOHMH. A keynote address will also be delivered by Harold Phillips, the director of the White House Office of National AIDS Policy. There will be 12 workshops, three plenaries, and over 40 posters that will highlight stories, accomplishments, and lessons learned while achieving ETE goals amid adversity.

“Ensuring access to quality, culturally responsive care is paramount to ensuring that individuals diagnosed with HIV can continue to live long, healthy lives,” Office of Health Equity and Human Rights Deputy Commissioner Johanne Morne said. “Prioritizing access to social determinants of health, the key factors that influence health outcomes, and addressing the persistent disparities in diagnoses, are both necessary to end the HIV epidemic. I look forward to continuing this mission with the support of Commissioner Bassett, Governor Hochul, and our community partners – all who remain committed to ending the epidemic.”