Apicha CHC's HIV Primary Care Sees Great Results

Apicha Community Health Center Oct 14, 2016  

Apicha Community Health Center is proud of our history serving people living with HIV/AIDS in New York City.  We have some exciting news to share regarding the health of our HIV-positive patients -- they're regularly coming in for care, finding medications that work for them, and achieving what's called viral load suppression.  

If you aren't familiar with viral load suppression, it means there is only a very small amount of the virus in someone's body.  What’s incredible is that when a patient’s viral load is suppressed they stay healthier and their chance of transmitting HIV virus drops dramatically.    Someone gets a suppressed viral load by taking what's called an anti-retroviral therapy (ART) that works for them.   At Apicha in 2015, 92% of our HIV+ patients suppressed their viral loads!

HIV_Care_Cascade_Results_2015.jpg

 Viral load suppression is only one part of what's known as the HIV Treatment Cascade. This is a model that outlines the stages of HIV medical care that people living with HIV go through from initial diagnosis to achieving the goal of viral load suppression.  The cascade was included in President Obama’s National HIV/AIDS strategy, the Affordable Care Act, and New York State's effort to End the HIV/AIDS Epidemic by 2020.  Because Apicha CHC’s HIV care model was developed around these important milestones, helping our patients achieve Viral Load Suppresssion was integrated into our practice.


To learn more about New York State's progress to End the Epidemic by 2020 click here.


 

Why is this so important?

In the fight of HIV preventeion, activists, organizations and people impacted by HIV have fought tirelessly to improve access to care, find safe and supportive places to receive treatment, and all the while work towards destigmatization.

Our results represent all of these things coming together. At Apicha CHC we have improved access in our outreach to our patients from communities of color, served a majority of low-income people, and increased our access for transgender patients seeking care. We offer a number of support services that make these successes possible and we are constantly improving social and cultural competence and education to destigmatize HIV.

 Our efforts our in line with New York State and City's mission to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic.  In 2015, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced his blueprint for ending the AIDS epidemic in New York State by 2020. The goal is to reduce the number of new HIV infections to just 750 (from an estimated 3,000) and achieve the first ever decrease in HIV prevalence in New York State. To accomplish this goal, three pillars were developed: 1) Identify persons with HIV who remain undiagnosed and link them to health care; 2) Link and retain persons diagnosed with HIV in health care to maximize virus suppression so they remain healthy and prevent further transmission; and 3) Facilitate access to Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for high-risk persons to keep them HIV negative. 

How did we achieve these results? 

The Patient-Centered Medical Home model at Apicha Community Health Center combines primary medical care with life-stabilizing mental health, care-management-based support services, and health-related policy advocacy. This model was adapted from our nationally-recognized HIV services that responded to the special needs of LGBT individuals, Asians & Pacific Islanders, and those with limited English proficiency.

 

And, of course, none of this would be possible without the dedication and work of our amazing patients and devoted staff.

What to do if you think you could be HIV positive:

  1. Know Your HIV Status. If you haven’t been tested in a while or you’ve never been tested, it’s time!  If you’re in New York City, come make an appointment at Apicha CHC  or click here to find testing sites nationwide.  
  2. If You Are HIV Positive, Get a Doctor Who is an HIV Specialist. An HIV Specialist can work with you to get on HIV medications and help you achieve viral load suppression.  If you know you’re HIV positive and are not seeing a doctor, make an appointment with Apicha today. 

 

Apicha Community Health Center | LGBT Health Center in NYC


Ready to take action about your health?
 request an appointment

Subscribe For Updates

Early Signs of HIV

Early Signs of HIV

Early HIV is the beginning stage of HIV disease, right after HIV infection occurs. If you were not...
Transgender Sexual Health Guide: Safer Sex

Transgender Sexual Health Guide: Safer Sex

When it comes to sex, there’s a serious lack of resources available to transgender people that...
What you need to know about PrEP, the HIV Prevention Pill

What you need to know about PrEP, the HIV Prevention Pill

  What You Need to Know About PrEP PrEP or pre-exposure prophylaxis, the HIV prevention pill, has...
Using Hook-Up Apps in 2017: Emotional Health

Using Hook-Up Apps in 2017: Emotional Health

"Using Hook-up Apps in 2017" is a series addressing issues of safety, racism, and emotional health....
PrEP and Vacation: Best Practices for Staying on top of Your PrEP

PrEP and Vacation: Best Practices for Staying on top of Your PrEP

Before you know it, summer will be here (it kind of already is). That means vacation and traveling!...
Attention: Important Notice for SNAP Recipients About Your February Benefits

Attention: Important Notice for SNAP Recipients About Your February Benefits

Because of the federal government shutdown, most SNAP recipients will receive their February SNAP...
New York Passes Historic GENDA Legislation Protecting Transgender Community

New York Passes Historic GENDA Legislation Protecting Transgender Community

This week, the New York legislature passed historic transgender anti-discrimination law. Commonly...
Governor Cuomo Announces Proposal to Raise Tobacco & E-Cigarette Sales Age

Governor Cuomo Announces Proposal to Raise Tobacco & E-Cigarette Sales Age

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced a proposal to raise the minimum sales age for tobacco and...
Mayor de Blasio Announces Plan to Guarantee Health Care for all New Yorkers

Mayor de Blasio Announces Plan to Guarantee Health Care for all New Yorkers

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced his administration will launch the largest, most comprehensive plan...
Substance Abuse 101: Marijuana

Substance Abuse 101: Marijuana

Marijuana is another substance that is commonly abused. Although some states have legalized its...