Expert Doctors Reveal What You Need to Know About the World’s Largest HIV Conference

Expert doctors from Orlando Immunology Center (OIC) reveal what you need to know about the world’s largest HIV conference taking place this week. The annual Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI) is March 4-7, 2019. Our experts have been attending for almost 20 years. Additionally, OIC has the only experts from Central Florida presenting clinical research at the conference.

Why does this conference to matter me?

Almost every HIV/AIDS and related infectious disease medication, cure and prevention strategy currently in use was developed through clinical research presented at CROI. As a result, millions of lives have been saved globally plus the quality of life dramatically improved for those living with HIV. Above all, the goal is to find cures for these infectious diseases, develop vaccines to prevent them and effective strategies for implementation.

Wait, there are world renowned HIV experts here in Orlando?

Expert Doctors Dr. Edwin DeJesus and Dr. Charlotte-Paige Rolle

Dr. Edwin DeJesus and Dr. Charlotte-Paige Rolle

Yes. Actually, OIC has several doctors that have presented at CROI for over a decade. It’s incredibly difficult to become a clinical research site but OIC’s Medical Director understood the importance early on.

“in the late 90’s, it was the only way to bring state of the art treatment options to Orlando.” – Dr. Edwin DeJesus

OIC has two expert doctors presenting at this year’s conference. Our Medical Director, Dr. Edwin DeJesus, has contributed to four clinical research studies and is the Principle Investigator on one of the studies. Dr. Charlotte-Paige Rolle, OIC’s Director of Research Operations has contributed to three and will be the moderator for a much anticipated PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) panel.

Your world renowned experts AND staff are bilingual?

federico hinestrosa md facp fidsa oicorlando

Dr. Federico Hinestrosa

Si. We have 3 Board Certified physicians plus staff at all levels that are bilingual. Our staff is from around the world and we take pride in the environment of diversity, inclusion and cultural humility we have cultivated over the last 20 years. Dr. Federico Hinestrosa, Associate Medical Director, is one of our other expert doctors who has presented on the world stage at CROI multiple times. He takes the leading role in working with our Spanish population. He is from Colombia, therefore he has a deep understanding of different cultural and socio-economic backgrounds which allows him to easily connect with patients.

What do I need to know about CROI 2019?

CROI brings together the top scientists, doctors and clinical researchers from around the world. Over 4,000 attendees gather to present the latest clinical research findings, significant developments and best practices for HIV and other infectious disease research. Consequently, this is the conference for any groundbreaking HIV or Hepatitis news.

CROI 2019’s Most Anticipated Research:

  • Development of a new class of HIV medication
  • New HIV prevention tools
  • PrEP clinical research on women, youth and other minority populations
  • Ending HIV in the US – National HIV Strategy
  • HIV Vaccine progress
  • Updates on a HIV cure

The research conducted can’t be published until it’s officially presented at CROI 2019 later this week. OIC will bring you the latest news from the conference and the experts’ perspectives of presentations. Our Community Relations Manager, Sam Graper, will be breaking it all down for you.

Can I participate in a clinical research study?

YES! OIC is shaping the future of healthcare through clinical research and you can join the effort. We always have many ongoing clinical research trials for HIV vaccines, HIV medications, and Hepatitis C which you can see here.

It’s easy to volunteer – just call our Research Recruiter, Jocelyn Montesdeoca, at (407) 647-3960 ext 2133 or click here for the online form. She’ll review the studies currently enrolling and if you are eligible, you will receive study drugs, labs, and medical treatments related to the study at no cost.


Sam Graper,
Orlando Immunology Center
Community Relations Manager

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