ViiV Healthcare is launching a four-year, $10 million initiative to reduce the HIV epidemic among black men who have sex with men (MSM) in Jackson, Mississippi, and Baltimore, Maryland, according to a ViiV press release.

The initiative is titled “Accelerate!” and its launch coincides with National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, which is February 7.

The initiative’s goal is to speed up community-driven solutions that will help black MSM access and engage in HIV care and services. Baltimore and Jackson were chosen as hubs because the two cities have been hit particularly hard by the epidemic.

In launching the program, ViiV met with community stakeholders in each city. The first phase of Accelerate! includes conducing more research to ascertain the gaps, challenges, assets and priorities that exist among black MSM in these cities. Once that’s completed, the appropriate approaches and next steps can be identified and put into action.