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Desert AIDS Project Community Action Newsletter


In This Issue

Positive Life Series: Diabetes and other metabolic challenges with HIV

Tuesday, November 4
Dr. Dan Lee from the University of California at San Diego will speak on the role of diabetes and other metabolc problems in HIV. The location is Sinatra Auditorium, Desert Regional Medical Center (Tachevah and Miraleste). A light supper is served at 6:00 PM; program begins at 6:30 PM. ASL provided. Sponsored by Jewish Family Service of the Desert. Email questions to but RSVP is NOT required.
Future presentations:
Dec. 2: Town Hall Meeting on AIDS Survivor Syndrome. 
Jan. 6: HPV screening and anal cancer prevention.
Feb. 3: HIV and the Law.
Mar. 3: Updates on new HIV treatments.
Apr. 7: Update from the Conference on Retroviruses & Opportunistic Infections (CROI).

Help Desert AIDS Walk set new fundraising record THIS Saturday
Oct. 18, 8 a.m.

We're on the verge of making history. We're just $50,000 away from breaking all records for the Desert AIDS Walk and being one step closer to making AIDS history! If you haven't registered yet, please join us today by clicking here: www.desertaidswalk.orgYou can also just show up Saturday morning and sign up then! You can contribute by supporting a walker or walking yourself. Participants who give a minimum of $25 get a commemorative T-shirt. Registration is free and begins at 7:30 a.m. The park is at 700 Tamarisk Lane in Palm Springs. 

Desert AIDS Project will be closed on Friday, October 24

Desert AIDS Project and LabCorp offices will be closed on Friday, October 24 for a D.A.P. staff retreat. Walgreens will be open regular business hours but you will have to use the Sunrise Way entrance.

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D.A.P.'s Darrell Tucci included in 40 Under 40!

Each year, Palm Springs Life magazine celebrates the desert’s bright, young talent representing a cross-section of professionals working in architecture, finance, media, real estate, visual and performing arts, fashion, retail, public administration, philanthropy, and more. This year D.A.P.'s own Darrell Tucci was named as one of the 40 Under 40 who are standouts in their fields and are engaged in the community. Read more about Darrell here.

It's National Case Management Week!

 

October 12-18, 2014 marks this year’s week-long celebration, recognizing the contributions and commitments case managers make and educating the public about the significant work they perform. Let's hear it for all our D.A.P. case managers who help connect our clients to programs and services, and truly embody the compassionate care we strive to provide daily. Kudos to all our case managers!

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Halloween Bingo!
Friday, October 31, oon - 2:00 PM




PRIZES FOR BEST COSTUMES
BINGO PRIZES

ITALIAN FOOD LUNCHEON

Pizza & Movie: This week, From Hell (2001)
Oct. 23, 1:00 PM


From Hell is an American horror mystery film directed by the Hughes brothers and loosely based on the graphic novel From Hell by Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell about the Jack the Ripper murders.

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What's new in HIV treatment

 

HIV treatment continues to change, as newer drugs get approved and better combinations are formed, with the goal of finding regimens that are easier to take and better tolerated. At IDWeek 2014, Joel Gallant, M.D., M.P.H., provided a recap of the latest developments in HIV treatment over the past year. You can read about them here.

PrEP just got more affordable

Gilead is raising income levels for their Assistance Program to 500% of FPL (or approx $58,350). So you may be able to get PrEP paid for if you are making below that amount and can't afford the drug. Also, the Co-Pay Assistance program is expanding from $200 to $300 per month. To find out if you are eligible for this medication assistance program, call 855.330.5479, Monday through Friday, between 9:00 AM and 8:00 PM (Eastern). Read more here

In Ebola fear, a familiar whiff of paranoia

There have been only three confirmed cases (and one death) of Ebola in the United States, but a related condition is spreading faster than a California wildfire. Americans nationwide are showing signs of an epidemic of fear, all too reminiscent of the stigmatization, dread of contagion, and moral panic of the early years of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Read more here.
Something else you might find interesting:
Top 5 falsehoods about Ebola

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Momentum towards nationwide marriage equality is undeniable

The good news is that in the last week, marriage equality has come to so many states that it's hard to keep up. The bad news is the same: we're winning so quickly, it's hard to keep up. The most important thing to know is that marriage equality saw two major victories last week: first, the U.S. Supreme Court allowed marriage to start in five states; and second, the Ninth Circuit ruled against marriage bans in two more states. But both of those victories have broader implications, because Circuit Courts cover multiple states. With 30 states now guaranteeing marriage equality to same-sex couples, the momentum towards full nationwide marriage equality is undeniable.  Following last week’s news from the Supreme Court of the United States declining to hear any of the cases pending before them challenging state bans on marriage for same-sex couples, there has been an unprecedented expansion of marriage rights across the country. 59% of Americans now live in a state with marriage equality, including Washington, DC. Read more here and here.
 

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Keep track of healthcare reform changes

If you are on Medicare, it's important to keep track of ongoing changes in coverage and payment options.  Most importantly, the "donut hole" of Medicare Part D drug plan co-pays begins to close this year (see below).  Regardless of your current insurance situation, click here for a government website that provides some guidance regarding Medicare, Medicaid and other possible insurance options (albeit limited) for those living with disabilities and/or chronic health issues (pay particular attention to the Medicare and Timeline tabs).  And click here for an even more detailed summary.  (sb) 

ADAP may pay Medicare Part D premium

ADAP-eligible clients who have to purchase Part D prescription drug coverage may qualify to have their Part D premium paid by the State of California. Follow this link to the Part D Premium Payment Program Application. You can also call the State of California at 916.449.5900 for more information.  (jl) 

Help with Medicare

The State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) offers one-on-one counseling and assistance to people with Medicare and their families.  This includes information about original Medicare, Medicare Health Plans, Medicare Prescription Drug Plans, Medicare Supplemental policies and Long-term Care Insurance.  The California Department of Aging (CDA) is responsible for statewide administration of SHIP, which is delivered through the Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program (HICAP).  HICAP services can be accessed via a toll-free line at 800.434.0222.  The local HICAP counselor is located at the Mizell Center in Palm Springs and can be reached at 760.323.5689.  Follow this link for more information. 

Help paying for prescription medications

Among the resources available to HIV-positive people to help pay for prescription medications is NeedyMeds. The mission of NeedyMeds is to make information about assistance programs available to low-income patients and their advocates at no cost.  Go  to www.needymeds.org, look up the  medications you need and you'll be directed to the patient assistance program website for that manufacturer.  The site  also offers a free drug discount card that is accepted at more than 62,000 pharmacies.  If you are having trouble paying for your medications this site is worth a look!  (jl) (sb) 

Help paying for private health insurance premiums

If you or someone you are close to is HIV positive and paying for private health insurance, there may be help in paying premiums. The California Department of Public Health, Office of AIDS (OA) administers the Health Insurance Premium Payment (OA-HIPP) Program.  OA has expanded OA-HIPP to make this program available to more individuals with health insurance who are at risk of losing it, and to individuals currently without health insurance who would like to purchase it.  You do NOT need to be a D.A.P. client to access OA-HIPP.  Follow this link to see if you qualify, and also check out the above links in the Healthcare reforms article. (jl) (sb)  

Quest Diagnostics website

Riverside County Healthcare (RCHC) Lab services are provided at both Riverside County Regional Medical Center (RCRMC) in Moreno Valley and Quest Diagnostics.  All former LabCorps patients are now served at Quest.  Click here or above for the Quest website: locations, hours and to make an appointment. 

Medically Indigent Services Program (MISP) & AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP)

For those who qualify, medical care and help paying for your medications are available through the MISP and ADAP programs.* Find out if you qualify: schedule an appointment by calling the numbers below. You can schedule your MISP and ADAP appointments together for Moreno Valley office ONLY. Call no sooner than four weeks before your ADAP qualifying expiration date (usually around your birthday). If you qualify for ADAP only, the local ADAP office is right across the driveway, south of D.A.P., at the Palm Springs Family Care Center. Specify the Palm Springs office when you call. Here are the numbers:

877.501.5085 - toll free
951.486.5375 - English
951.486.5400 - Spanish
951.486.4635 - fax

*NOTICE: Faxed MISP applications can get lost in the process. Many people who have faxed their application have had to re-apply later. It's best to apply in person in Moreno Valley, and get a "receipt of application", and use that as proof that you applied to avoid uninterrupted services with your D.A.P. medical doctor visits.

D.A.P. contact information

The Desert AIDS Project local phone number is 760.323.2118. The toll-free phone number is 866.331.3344 and the website is desertaidsproject.org.

DAPCAN back issues always available online

Need another look at something you read in DAPCAN? Find past issues online by clicking this link. As always, you can also read the most current edition of DAPCAN on the D.A.P. website at www.desertaidsproject.org/newsletter

D.A.P. holiday closings for 2014

January 20 — Martin Luther King Jr. Day
February 17 — Presidents' Day
March 31 — Cesar Chavez Day
May 26 — Memorial Day
July 4 — Independence Day
September 1 — Labor Day
October 13 — Columbus Day
November 27-28 — Thanksgiving
December 25-26 — Christmas

Call 211 for essential human services in Riverside County

2-1-1 is a toll-free service for residents looking for information about essential human services such as affordable housing, food pantries, help for an aging parent, free or low cost health services, addiction prevention programs, employment, support groups, volunteer opportunities, and 1,700 additional services! (jl)

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Your annual ADAP/MISP appointment

For those who meet income eligibility requirements, medical care and help paying for medications may be available through state MISP and ADAP programs. To qualify: call the numbers below and schedule an appointment. (You can schedule your MISP and ADAP appointments together for Moreno Valley office ONLY.) Call no sooner than four weeks before your ADAP qualifying expiration date (usually around your birthday). If you qualify for ADAP only, the local ADAP office across the driveway, south of D.A.P., at the Palm Springs Family Care Center. Specify the Palm Springs office when you call and make sure you have all documents required! Delays can cause lapses in drug coverage.

877.501.5085 - toll free 951.486.5375 - English
951.486.5400 - Spanish/espanol 951.486.4635 - fax

Unfortunately, it's sometimes difficult to get through to make appointments by phone. We were recently notified that there is now an individual at Window 2 next door at the Palm Springs Family Care Center that can schedule appointments and process demographics changes. If it is more convenient, you can walk next door to schedule your MISP/ADAP appointment in person. (jl)

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Let Disability.gov guide you to information you need

Are you looking for information about how much work you need to qualify for Social Security disability benefits, or how to apply for benefits? Are you searching for an affordable place to live, or want to find ways to make your home accessible? Do you need help finding a job, or want to learn how working might affect your Social Security disability payments? If you answered "yes" to any of these questions, then check out these guides on Disability.gov:

Disability.gov's guides answer many of the most frequently asked questions about eligibility for disability benefits, locating job training services, as well as housing assistance programs for individuals with disabilities. In addition, Disability.gov’s Guide to Getting Help in Your Community has information about programs and organizations near you that provide other services and supports, including health care, temporary financial assistance for families, and help paying home heating bills. (jl)

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Get Social Security forms online

A reminder that starting in February, form requests for proofs of income and Social Security numbers will not be available at local Social Security offices as in the past. Now you must go online for those documents at socialsecurity.gov or call 800.772.1213. Remember that the forms can be printed out immediately but phone requests will take approximately seven days to receive by mail. You need these forms not only for Social Security, but also to apply at D.A.P., for ADAP and MediCAL, most updates and other insurance and eligibility requirements. If you have no computer, you may use the computer lab at D.A.P. and print your forms there. (sb)

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New Fact Sheets available to help with ACA questions

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has released a series of easy-to-understand consumer fact sheets for those who are enrolling or have newly enrolled in healthcare plans through the ACA marketplace. A list of topics, with links to the fact sheets, is available here. (ej)

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Contact your elected officials

DAPCAN encourages readers to contact elected officials on important issues. Make your voice heard by contacting our state and federal officials!

Find current list of officials here