To better meet client demand, AIDS Delaware has doubled its case manager staff downstate and relocated their southern Delaware office to Georgetown.

With the sudden closure of Kent and Sussex Community Services in late February, AIDS Delaware took on an additional 153 clients who are living with HIV/AIDS. The Georgetown office location is better able to cover clients living in Kent and Sussex Counties.

“It is more centrally located and more accessible for our clients and for our Case Management Team. There is easier access to public transportation and other social services that our clients can access like the WM Holloway Community Program for HIV Care” said John Gardner, executive director of AIDS Delaware.

There are currently 3,563 people in Delaware living with HIV/AIDS. While HIV/AIDS can now be a very manageable disease, many in the state don’t have access to health insurance or a strong support system, according to AIDS Delaware officials. This, they said, is the critical role that the case managers play.

“We try to help them navigate what can be a complicated system” said Tiffany H. Milam, Kent/Sussex case manager supervisor. “Case managers are often the bridge between the clients’ needs and identifying the resources available to them. Things like copay assistance, dental care, eye care, food pantries and emergency financial assistance.”

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic puts extra pressure on people with compromised immune systems, putting them in the higher risk category.

AIDS Delaware is the state’s first and largest non-profit AIDS service organization, founded in 1984 by concerned volunteer activists to address the needs of the state’s emerging AIDS community. AIDS Delaware provides free, confidential rapid HIV testing, comprehensive risk counseling, certified drug and alcohol counseling, prevention for positives programs (CLEAR), mental health counseling, pharmacy services, transportation services in lower Delaware, and programs in prevention, outreach and education.