CA Public Health Advisory Urging Everyone to Refrain from Vaping Click HERE for Details.

CA Public Health Advisory Urging Everyone to Refrain from Vaping. Click HERE for Details.

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Call: (760) 323-2118
8am to 5pm Monday - Friday

Call: (760) 323-2118
8am to 5pm Mon - Fri

You can quit smoking. We can help.

Join the American Lung Association’s eight-week quit smoking program, conveniently held at the Desert AIDS Project. Hundreds of thousands of people have become smoke-free through a Freedom From Smoking® Group Clinic which offers a structured, systematic approach to quitting smoking.

Overseen by a certified facilitator, you will learn:

  • How to know if you’re really ready to quit
  • Medications that can increase your success
  • Lifestyle changes to make quitting easier
  • How to prepare for your quit day
  • Coping strategies for managing stress & avoiding weight gain
  • How to stay smokefree for good

Freedom From Smoking Group Quit Program

Fridays (beginning on October 4, 2019) at 2:00 p.m.

Call (760) 992-0469 or email cpulver@desertaidsproject.org to RSVP. Our first session starts on Friday, October 4th at 2:00 p.m.

Visit Lung.org/ffs for more information about the program or our online Freedom From Smoking® Plus if a Group Clinic isn’t right for your quit.

DAP Client Social Security Disability In …

Social Security Disability informational session – new claims and/or termination from disability

Attorney and Law Professor, Troy A. Tureau, LM, J.D., B.A. will be answering DAP Client questions on Social Security Disability pertaining to new claims, appeals and potential termination.

Location: DHD Room

Aging Positively – 4th Annual HIV  …

Event Contact: JP Allen
(760) 992-0440
Desert AIDS Project
jallen@desertaidsproject.org

Press Contact: Jack Bunting
Desert AIDS Project
(760) 656-8472
jbunting@desertaidsproject.org

When: Wednesday, September 18, 2019, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Where: Joslyn Senior Center 73750 Catalina Way Palm Desert, CA 92260

Complimentary beverages, snacks and lunch provided.

Please RSVP your attendance to J.P. Allen phone: (760) 992-0440 or email: jallen@desertaidsproject.org. Please also RSVP for FREE Shuttle service from Desert AIDS Project Campus to/from Joslyn Senior Center as well as for ASL services. Thank you!

Palm Desert, CA — Aging Positively, the annual Coachella Valley conference aimed at providing practical information as well as inspiration for those aging with HIV, will explore Self-Care, Sexual Isolation, Loneliness and Medicare/Prescription Drug Coverage. And this year, the 4x Gold Medal Olympic Champion Greg Louganis will provide an uplifting and inspirational keynote address.

People with HIV are living longer lives, thanks to advancements in scientific research and medical treatments; about half of HIV positive individuals in the US are age 50 and above. This is in stark contrast to the days when Desert AIDS Project was founded (1984), when HIV was a death sentence.

Speaker line-up

  • Moderator: Brad Fuhr, California Oasis Marketing Group and Gay Desert Guide
  • Keynote: Olympic Champion Greg Louganis
  • “Own Your Future: Essential Conversations You Must Have Now” by LKAPS Social Committee Co-Chair Richard Bass and Dr. Brian De Vries, ProfessorEmeritus of Gerontology, SFSU.
  • “Sexual Isolation & Loneliness” by Jill Hingston, PhD, The LGBT Center Palm Springs
  • “Medicare & Prescription Drug Coverage” by Brian Bilhartz, Bilhartz Desert Insurance

About Greg Louganis

Greg Louganis is simply the greatest diver in history. You would be hard pressed to find a person who watched either the 1984 or 1988 Olympics who was not enthralled by the poetry that was Greg Louganis: the beauty and power of his diving captured the world. 2016 marked the 40th Anniversary of Greg’s first Olympic win- a silver medal at the 1976 Montreal Olympics, in platform diving, at the tender age of 16. Eight years later he became the first male diver to get double gold in springboard and platform in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, and again in the 1988 Seoul Olympics. He has earned a total of 5 Olympic medals, 5 World Championship titles and 47 national titles — more than any person in U.S. history. His records remain unbroken.

In 1988 Greg Louganis also tested positive for HIV. Coming out as a gay athlete in a time when it simply was not done, his 1995 autobiography, Breaking the Surface, spent five weeks at Number One on the New York Times bestseller list and his PGA and Emmy nominated Documentary Back on Board is receiving rave reviews nationwide and can now be seen on HBO. In 2016 General Mills announced that Greg would receive a Wheaties Box for his achievements, and that development was so significant it warranted a New York Times exclusive. He had the honor of being included in ESPN’s 2016 annual Body Issue, and in 2017 was the first openly gay Grand Marshal of The Rose Parade. In 2019, he continues to serve as Sports Director for Red Bull Cliff Diving, a division of Red Bull, one of the world’s best known brands.

The story of Greg’s life, is a story that has inspired millions, and he regularly speaks to the most significant organizations and companies in the world to share that story. Today, as a speaker, author, actor, activist, humanitarian and designer, he continues his tradition of excellence in every field he touches.

About The Aging Positively Conference

The Aging Positively Conference is conceived and sponsored by medical and service providers, researchers, community groups, and media groups from the Coachella Valley:

Borrego Health

Desert Arc

Desert AIDS Project

Desert Care Network

Desert Oasis Healthcare

Eisenhower Health

Gay Desert Guide

HIV + Aging Project – Palm Springs

Jewish Family Service of the Desert

Let’s Kick ASS Palm Springs (LKAPS)

PromoHomo.TV

The DOCK

The LGBTQ Community Center (AKA The Center)

The Joslyn Center

About Desert AIDS Project

Desert AIDS Project (D.A.P.) is a Federally Qualified Health Center in Palm Springs, CA offering D.A.P. Total Care – a combination of medical, dental, counseling, social services, support groups, alternative therapies, in-house pharmacy and lab, and other health and wellness services. D.A.P.’s sexual health clinic, The DOCK, offers STD testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and free HIV and HCV testing. D.A.P.’s Get Tested Coachella Valley campaign, the nation’s first region-wide HIV testing and access to care initiative, was recognized by the White House for helping to bring about an AIDS-free future. D.A.P. is rated a “Top 20 HIV Charity” by About.com.

Visit www.desertaidsproject.org, www.thedockclinic.org, and www.gettestedcoachellavalley.org to learn more.

MyChart Users – Important Information

Desert AIDS Project (DAP) has transitioned from “OCHIN” to a Desert AIDS Project MyChart log-in page.
 
What do I need to do?
 
1. Switch from the OCHIN MyChart selection on your phone application to the new Desert AIDS Project MyChart selection
 
2. If using MyChart from a PC / Device, update any saved URL (web address) to this new URL (web address): https://mychart.ochin.org/mychartdap/
 
Call 760-323-2118, ext 711 and ask for Albert or Curtis if you have trouble with your username or password or if you have questions about the new MyChart.

The ABCs of working with LGBTQ Inclusion

Pre-Conference Workshop for the Finding Freedom LGBTQ Symposium: Desert AIDS Project presents The ABCs of Working With LGBTQ Inclusion

Presenters will examine regional trends, issues and concerns, and discuss what is on the horizon both socially and legally for LGBTQ+ treatment staff, community members and clients. Attendees will explore personal and professional inclusiveness and what could be improved to create a safer space for community members and clients.

Attendees will be able to:

  • Identify areas in personal and professional lives where we are not creating an open, safe space for community members and clients, specifically LGBTQ+
  • Discover ways to be more inclusive, personally and professionally
  • Examine trends specific to the Coachella Valley in regards to LGBTQ+ Issues and Concerns
  • Explore what is on the horizon for LGBTQ+ rights, both socially and legally.

3 CEU’s for Addiction Professionals

Click here to RSVP!

DAP Leadership Presents Infectious Disea …

D.A.P.’s own David Morris MD and Matt Moran MSN, ANP-BC, presented their research at the prestigious Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI), happening this week in Boston.

CROI brings together top clinical researchers from around the world to share important developments and best research methods in the ongoing battle against HIV/AIDS and related infectious diseases.

CROI is a global model of collaborative science and the premier international venue for bridging basic and clinical investigation to clinical practice in the field of HIV and related viruses.

We are so proud!

Sex Toy Talk, How To Do It Safely at Tou …

If you thought you knew everything about sex toys, you’re in for a surprise. When Joey Valenzuela, co-owner of Not So Innocent adult store presents to the crowd at Toucan’s, it will be about more than latex. He will explore the benefits of role-play for sexual health, as well as the potential for human disconnection due to online porn, and how we can avoid isolation.

“I want people to be OK with sex, with what’s in their mind, and then go have a safe experience.”

To get to that place, however, sometimes it takes self-exploration. “It’s OK to admit you don’t know what you want or like,” he says. “Once you decide what’s realistic in your own mind, we want you to then be safe with what you do.”

While the latest sex toys and supplies will be explored, the underlying theme will be how we humans approach sex. Clay Sales, Mr. Leather Washington 2016 will be onstage to help with the conversation.

Valenzuela is concerned about our digital world and the prevalence of people accessing sex and pornography online, but not for the reasons one might think.

“We have access to sex all the time, but we don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes with the actors.”

When people attempt to mimic what they see in porn, especially with sex toys or BDSM scenarios, without knowing the proper techniques, they could experience physical injuries.

The actors in videos he says, “They are either educated on what they’re doing, or they’re likely hurting themselves.”

Valenzuela has a lot of experience counseling people on sex toys and BDSM. He and his husband opened up Not So Innocent on North Palm Canyon Drive in 2014

“It’s hard to talk about sex,” says Joey Valenzuela, but he and his husband Bill Freyer encourage people to do so daily at their shop.

Sometimes he feels like a private counselor, and he’s just fine with that.

“There’s times after a long day that we’re so tired after all the conversations, but it’s really rejuvenating.”

Damon Jacobs on Dating and Relationships …

Join us in person for a complimentary drink or two plus passed hors d’oeuvres, or watch our Facebook Livestream during the event to ask this nationally recognized PrEP advocate your questions.

Getting our heads around how PrEP and PEP works likely is less of an undertaking than the emotional implications it will have for how we connect with our partner/s in this new era.

According to Bruce Weiss, Desert AIDS Project’s Director of Community Health, “Before PrEP and PEP, the only way of protecting each other and ourselves from contracting HIV was abstinence and condom use. Abstinence was frustrating, and relying solely on condoms proved challenging for many.  Not only did new infections still occur at a destructive pace, many felt a sense of fear around sex, as well as worry when getting regular HIV tests. We have heard consistently from gay men that it was hard to really enjoy sex without this fear and anxiety, even when consistently using condoms.”

Old ways of thinking, like other habits, die hard. But with PrEP, this fear surrounding sex is no longer necessary for us to protect each other and ourselves. Damon Jacobs, LMFT, is determined to help us grasp this, and even go deeper.

According to Jacobs, we are still not discussing how we cognitively and emotionally connect. The puzzle he wants to help each of us solve is “how can sexual connections be experienced as meaningful whether they last an hour, a year, or five decades.”

If anyone should know, it’s Damon Jacobs. He’s a licensed marriage and family therapist, HIV prevention specialist, and nationally-recognized PrEP advocate.

“Integrating PrEP education into a private psychotherapy practice was a natural fit for me, given my work for most of the past 20 years has centered on enhancing serenity in individuals, increasing pleasure in relationships, and challenging oppressive structures in society.”

2017 HIV and Aging Conference

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Event Contact: JP Allen
Desert AIDS Project
(760) 898-0133
jallen@desertaidsproject.org

D.A.P. Contact: Tom Tarr
(760) 656-8464 direct
ttarr@desertaidsproject.org

SAVE THE DATE: September 15, 2017
Local Organizations Present “Aging Positively”
A Free Conference Focusing On Seniors with HIV
on National HIV/AIDS & Aging Awareness Day

PALM SPRINGS, CA (August 21, 2017) – On Friday, September 15th from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm at the Mizell Senior Center. The day is also National HIV/AIDS & Aging Awareness Day.

The eight organizations are: Desert AIDS Project, The Clinton Foundation, Let’s Kick ASS, The Cathedral City Senior Center, The Joslyn Senior Center, The LGBT Community Center of the Desert, Jewish Family Service of the Desert and Mizell Senior Center.

“D.A.P. is proud and excited to collaborate with these dedicated organizations that provide comprehensive services to Coachella Valley’s aging population living with HIV/AIDS,” said Bruce Weiss, Director of Community Health at Desert AIDS Project. “We want to thank each of the conference speakers, committee members and the Mizell Senior Center who donated their time and effort to make this conference free of cost and open to everyone.” Weiss will serve as host and moderator for the event.

According to the Riverside County Epidemiology of HIV/AIDS, 2015 report: 28.8 percent of all people living with HIV in the Coachella Valley are 60 or older. From 2006 through 2015 over half of all HIV cases diagnosed in the Coachella Valley are among adults 45 years old or older. The average age of persons living with HIV in the Coachella Valley is 52.1 years, compared to 40.2 in the rest of the county.

The conference features four noted speakers who will each present a 20 minute program followed by a 10 minute Q&A. At noon a complimentary lunch will be served to all attendees.

“HIV and Aging: Risks and Resiliencies” presented by Jill Gover, Ph.D. Jill Gover is the Director of The Scott Hines Mental Health Clinic at The Center. She is a clinical psychologist, specializing in addiction, anxiety, depression, aging, and LGBT issues.

“Isolation of Older Americans” presented by Woody Bloch. Woody Bloch is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) and the Clinical Director at Jewish Family Service of the Desert. He also continues to provide counseling to children, adolescents, their families and adults and has done so for the last eleven years. Joining him is Judy Monetathchi, who is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) and Geriatric Case Manager at Jewish Family Service of the Desert. She currently counsels individuals and families, facilitates a women’s group on Healthy Relationships, and works with seniors on finding solutions to various needs they may have.

“Sexual Health and How to Talk to Your Provider” presented by Tulika Singh, MD., along with Eric Jannke, local HIV advocate. Dr. Singh is a Board Certified HIV Specialist, and an Infectious Disease and Internal Medicine Physician, working in HIV care since 2009. Prior to joining the Desert AIDS Project, she worked as a Primary Care and Infectious Disease Specialist at North Ottawa Community Hospital in Grand Haven, Michigan. Joining Dr. Singh on stage is Eric Jannke. He is an HIV advocate and serves in the leadership of Let’s Kick ASS (AIDS Survivor Syndrome) Palm Springs. He’s also a client volunteer for Desert AIDS Project.

“The Transition from Private Insurance to Medicare” presented by Roger Townsend. Roger Townsend, MD is a retired physician who has been a practicing anesthesiologist at the regional trauma center in Mission Viejo, CA. He retired to the Coachella Valley and has been a volunteer registered Medicare Counselor with HICAP for several years. Currently, Dr. Townsend regularly sees HICAP clients at the Palm Springs LGBT Center.

Desert AIDS Project (D.A.P.) is a Federally Qualified Health Center in Palm Springs, CA offering D.A.P. TotalCare – a combination of medical, dental, counseling, social services, support groups, alternative therapies, in-house pharmacy and lab, and other health and wellness services. D.A.P.’s sexual health clinic, The DOCK, offers STD testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and free HIV and HCV testing. D.A.P.’s Get Tested Coachella Valley campaign, the nation’s first region-wide HIV testing and access to care initiative, was recognized by the White House for helping to bring about an AIDS-free future. D.A.P. is rated a “Top 20 HIV Charity” by About.com. Visit: www.desertaidsproject.org, www.thedockclinic.org, and www.gettestedcoachellavalley.org to learn more.

D.A.P. Revises HIV Prevention Guidelines

For Immediate Release
April 25, 2017
Contact: Tom Tarr, Director of Client Development
Tel: 760-656-8460
Email: ttarr@desertaidsproject.org

Desert AIDS Project revises its prevention guidelines in light of support for new research

Desert AIDS Project joins other national HIV prevention organizations by embracing a recent policy statement of the National Association of State and Territorial AIDS Directors (NASTAD). That policy titled, “Risk of Sexual Transmission of HIV from Virally Suppressed People Living with HIV” affirms the related scientific evidence and aligns prevention policy with that of many in the public health community.

“Recent research has shown that treating people with HIV and helping them maintain an undetectable viral load (less than 200 copies/ml) prevents the sexual transmission of HIV,” said Bruce Weiss, Director of Community Health at D.A.P. “The studies demonstrated no new transmissions occurred when the HIV positive partner was virally suppressed. This provides an additional prevention strategy for HIV-positive persons and their sexual partners which can also help end new HIV infections.”

In light of this new research, D.A.P. now recommends the following to prevent new HIV infections:

  • 1. Commitment to ongoing treatment for HIV – ongoing treatment for individuals with HIV is vital to the success of this prevention strategy
  • 2. Regular healthcare and viral load testing – staying healthy and regular testing is necessary for individuals utilizing this prevention strategy
  • 3. Steps need to be taken to prevent Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI)
    • Because of rising STI rates in the Coachella Valley, D.A.P. recommends that individuals having sex with more than one partner continue to use condoms. Condoms are the only proven strategy to help prevent new infections of STIs such as Syphilis, Gonorrhea and Chlamydia.
    • Regular STI testing is also recommended at least every three months for those having sex with multiple partners, in order to detect infections early and ensure proper treatment.

“We’re excited about the confirmation of effectiveness that the research provides and the prevention community has embraced,” said David Morris, MD, Medical Director at D.A.P. “But to be effective, it’s important that people commit to taking their medicine as directed, as well as seeing a healthcare professional for regular monitoring and care. Without this commitment, this prevention strategy becomes ineffective.”

“It is important to increase awareness of this prevention strategy,” said Karen Mark, MD, Ph.D., Chief of the Office of AIDS in the Center for Infectious Diseases at the California Department of Public Health. “We’ve made great strides in our efforts to prevent new HIV infections. This strategy can play a key role in ending or reducing HIV-related stigma and allow partners to select prevention methods that work best for their relationships.”

For more information about D.A.P.s policy, the NASTAD position, and related research, please visit these pages:

NASTAD Policy: Risk of Sexual Transmission of HIV from Virally Suppressed People Living with HIV
PARTNER Study: How to Interpret the Zero Transmission Results
HPTN 052: Study Summary

About Desert AIDS Project

Desert AIDS Project (D.A.P.) is a Federally Qualified Health Center in Palm Springs, CA offering D.A.P. Total Care – a combination of medical, dental, counseling, social services, support groups, alternative therapies, in-house pharmacy and lab, and other health and wellness services.  D.A.P.’s sexual health clinic, The DOCK, offers STD testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and free HIV and HCV testing. D.A.P.’s Get Tested Coachella Valley campaign, the nation’s first region-wide HIV testing and access to care initiative, was recognized by the White House for helping to bring about an AIDS-free future.  D.A.P. is rated a “Top 20 HIV Charity” by About.com. Visit www.desertaidsproject.org, www.thedockclinic.org, and www.gettestedcoachellavalley.org to learn more.

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Printable version: Desert AIDS Project Press statement Viral Suppression Prevention Strategy 04.25.2017

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