Drug Use and Sexual Health in the Time of COVID-19

Listen to a Podcast of the Session Here

Community members around the world joined us for a frank and candid conversation on drug use and sexual health among gay and bisexual men and other men who have sex with men in the midst of COVID-19.

The panelists, moderator and audience had the opportunity to share their community experience through open dialogue.


Oscar Raul Lopez was born in Mexico and smuggled into the United States as an infant. Growing up Queer and being called a Mojado “Wetback” on the Borderlands of both countries shaped his 30 years in public health when advocating for Latino gay, bisexual and MSM throughout the U.S. and Latin America.  Oscar leads Poderosos which specializes in advocacy to improve healthcare outcomes for Latino LGBTQ+ communities, Latino people living with HIV, and those challenged by substance use disorders along the Texas-Mexico border.

Elie Ballan, Director M-Coalition, LGBTIQ and KP health Network in MENA and Head of Health and Relief at AFE MENA. Activist with a film-maker background, living with HIV for 14 years and based in Beirut Lebanon. Elie is very active in local and international advocacy mainly for HIV, LGBTIQ and Human Rights representing communities on different governance and advisory seats, mainly IDAHOT Board, Global Advisory Panel for HIV Justice Worldwide and Steering Committee of MPACT and the MENA CAB

Yasir Ali Khan is an activist closely working on Substance use/abuse, Chemsex and fighting for the cause of HIV/AIDS in Pakistan for more than 10 years.  He is also working for a prevention program of GFATM as Monitoring and Evaluation for MSM, TG and FSW and actively working for the Asia Chemsex platform.



Angel Fabian is the Advocacy Coordinator of the Fijate Bien Program with MPact.  He/she is an immigrant, curanderx, two-spirit/queer, Zapotecx/Xicanx activist and organizer whose life experience has enabled him to connect, advocate with/for, uplift and celebrate community members from all walks of life. With a 20-year history of progressive policy, advocacy, and management experience across a range of public health settings, including community-based organizations, community health centers and public health departments, Angel possesses a strong and unwavering history as a Latinx HIV/AIDS advocate.

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Learn more about MPact’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic among gay and bisexual men