Spencer Cox (activist)

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Patrick Spencer Cox (March 10, 1968 – December 18, 2012) was an American HIV/AIDS activist. He was involved in the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power and the Treatment Action Group. He helped facilitate the production of protease inhibitors.

Biography[edit]

Cox was born in Atlanta, Georgia. He came out as gay while he was in high school. He attended Bennington College for three years, where he studied theater and literature.[1] He moved to New York City in 1989, to pursue acting. He joined the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP) that year and was soon thereafter diagnosed with HIV.[2]

In 1992, Cox joined with other ACT UP members to form the Treatment Action Group, which worked to further treatment advances in HIV. He worked with the Food and Drug Administration's Anti-Viral Advisory Committee to hasten the approval time for new HIV medications, including the new drug class of protease inhibitors. Cox designed a clinical trial to examine the effectiveness of ritonavir, which led to its approval.[2][3] Cox founded the Medius Institute for Gay Men's Health, with the mission of researching issues related to aging gay men, in 2006. With a lack of funding, Cox abandoned the effort and began using methamphetamine. He moved back to Atlanta to recuperate.[1] He returned to New York in 2012, and appeared in the documentary film How to Survive a Plague.[1] He also wrote for POZ.[2]

Cox died at The Allen Hospital in Upper Manhattan, on December 18, 2012, of AIDS-related causes, after he stopped taking his HIV medications.[1][2]

St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital Center renamed their HIV clinic, formerly the Center for Comprehensive Care, as the Spencer Cox Center for Health, in June 2013.[4]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Bernstein, Jacob (February 22, 2013). "Surviving AIDS, but Not the Life That Followed". NYTimes.com. Retrieved October 7, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c d Weber, Bruce (December 21, 2012). "Spencer Cox, AIDS Activist, Dies at 44". NYtimes.com. Retrieved October 7, 2013. 
  3. ^ Kolata, Gina (September 12, 1994). "F.D.A. Debate on Speedy Access to AIDS Drugs Is Reopening – New York Times". Nytimes.com. Retrieved October 7, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Spencer Cox Center for Health Opens In New York". Huffingtonpost.com. Associated Press. June 12, 2013. Retrieved October 7, 2013.