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

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

DAP Talks: Restoring Hope – Nation …

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many people have been experiencing anxiety, fear, frustration, sadness, and loneliness. And some, to the point that those feelings have become unbearable. If you’re feeling hopeless and having thoughts about suicide or you’re concerned about someone else, listen to Dr. Gover, Clinical Psychologist, talk about some ways to find help, and restore hope.

Suicide Prevention Resources:

If emergency medical care is needed, call 9-1-1 or go to the emergency room of the nearest hospital.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 273-8255. The phone lines are answered by trained professionals; the call is free and confidential.

Riverside County

If you need to be connected to mental health services in Riverside County, call the CARES Line at (800) 706-7500. You may also call or walk into a Riverside County 24/7 Mental Health Urgent Care location. Whether you are in crisis or just need someone to talk to, all services are voluntary. Counseling and nursing, as well as, psychiatric medications are available. All locations are open 24/7 and everyone is welcome regardless of insurance type or ability to pay.

The Trevor Project

The Trevor Project is a national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ youth and young adults, ages 13–24, over the phone, online and via text. Trevor Lifeline (24/7): (866) 488-7386, TrevorText: Text the word “Trevor” to (202) 304-1200 to text with a trained counselor on Fridays from 1–5 p.m., TrevorChat: Confidential chat service with a trained volunteer counselor available 7 days a week, from 12 noon –6 p.m. Learn more at https://www.thetrevorproject.org/

It Gets Better Project

This website is a place where young people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender can see how love and happiness can be a reality in their future. It’s a place where people can share their stories, take the It Gets Better Project pledge, watch videos of love and support and learn about resources. Visit https://itgetsbetter.org/ to learn more. What’s Up Safehouse What’s Up Safehouse is a 24/7, free, anonymous mental health crisis texting line. Get immediate support from a licensed mental health professional. Dedicated to helping support the residents of Riverside County through issues surrounding anxiety, substance abuse, depression, school pressure, peer pressure, LGBTQ struggles, relational issues, suicidal thoughts, bullying, and any other issue that is causing trouble. Text SHHELP to 844.204.0880 24/7 for immediate support and resources. Learn more at https://safehouseofthedesert.com/what…

DAP Patients Will Get HIV Meds Quicker U …

DAP Patients Will Get HIV Meds Quicker Under New Rapid ART Program

Palm Springs, CA (September 3, 2020) -- DAP has reached an important milestone in the fight to end HIV, winning designation as a Rapid ART Implementation Site, standing with just 10 other healthcare organizations in the U.S. The Award for Special Projects Of National Significance was won in a competitive grant process and is bestowed by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).

By joining this national demonstration project and collaboration with HRSA, DAP will share its 36 years of experience in the fight to end HIV, and it will boost resources for its HIV testing and treatment programs for people in the Coachella Valley.

For a three-year period, DAP will continue to build and share its best practices for making sure PLWHA receive antiretroviral therapy (ART) quickly after receiving an initial HIV diagnosis, or immediately after requesting it if they had stopped ART for any reason.

It’s a surprise to many, but people are still developing and even dying from AIDS in 2020, right here in the Coachella Valley. Our early intervention program had 160 referrals for attempts to find patients who had stopped filling their ART prescriptions, ceasing their HIV treatment without explanation. (Based on calendar year 2019)

Falling through the cracks means that some patients whose bodies had stabilized with life-saving HIV meds have stopped taking them, sometimes for five years or more. And for others, it means not starting therapy at all after receiving an HIV diagnosis.

Without accessing care, they are waiting until they are sick from HIV-related illnesses before attempting to resume ART and primary care.

Waiting to begin or resume ART always leaves a dangerous gap of time that could result in catastrophe, such as failing to ever adhere to medication therapy, or even death. Another consequence is the effect on others as sex partners are put at risk for HIV.

This collaboration with HRSA seeks to remedy the problem with a protocol that provides ART ASAP:

  • Same day as HIV diagnosis (some exceptions)
  • Quickly after request is made to resume therapy

The vast majority (about 80 percent) of new HIV infections in the U.S. in 2016 were transmitted from the nearly 40 percent of people with HIV who either did not know they had HIV, or who received a diagnosis but were not receiving HIV care. (CDC)

According to Dr. Tulika Singh, DAP Associate Chief Medical Officer, not all physicians are permitted to treat their patients without administrative obstructions that derail health outcomes.

“Despite having extensive experience in HIV treatment and care, caregivers struggle to reduce high HIV prevalence and rising HIV incidence rates, due to delays in starting ART,” she says. “This is due to previous protocols and practicing traditional HIV medicine,” like having to do unnecessary lab work or jumping through hoops with insurance.

“No more!” says Dr. Singh.

Greater access for ART through this project will be enabled by DAP’s referral and linkage networks, with extensive arrangements with regional medical centers, community clinics and individual providers, in addition to this grant.

“We are able to provide rapid start ART for newly diagnosed persons living with HIV as early as the same day of diagnosis,” she says. “This will help us get to UN 90-90-90 goal sooner than anticipated and help our patients age in a healthy way.”

The Courage To Resume ART
Given what we know about the health consequences of stopping ART, the public health argument is strong for offering the resources to resume therapy quickly and without delay.

When it comes to why people fall out of care, “Every situation is so different,” says C.J. Tobe, Director of Community Health at DAP.

Poverty affects most DAP clients, but it affects PLWHA uniquely. They might cope with denial, depression, and suicidal ideation. Stigma is often made worse by rejection from loved ones, and drug and alcohol abuse are more likely to increase.

But other factors may include housing insecurity, unemployment, lack of transportation, and fear of government due to immigration status. Being a recent transplant to the Palm Springs area from other parts of the U.S. also can also be a reason.

“People are also dying by not accessing all the things you need to make the medication keep working,” says Tobe.  “There’s a lot that goes into getting that treatment, starting with walking through those doors.”

In addition to ART, DAP helps patients thrive with HIV with access to social services they are eligible for, ensuring they receive needed food, housing, transportation, and home health care support if they need it.

U=U Helping End The Epidemic

The more people who are on treatment and undetectable, the fewer new transmissions there will be. According to Prevention Access founder Bruce Richman,

“We need access to treatment and removing barriers, not just for the wellbeing of people living with HIV,” he says. “But also, to prevent new transmissions.”

About Desert AIDS Project

Desert AIDS Project (DAP) is a humanitarian healthcare organization in Palm Springs, CA offering DAP 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. DAP’s sexual health clinic, The DOCK, offers STI testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and HIV and HCV testing. DAP’s Get Tested Coachella Valley campaign, the nation’s first region-wide free HIV testing and access to care initiative, was recognized by the White House for helping to bring about an AIDS-free future. DAP has earned a “Four Star” rating from Charity Navigator for the twelfth consecutive year – landing DAP in the top 6% of nonprofits rated. The distinction recognizes that we exceed industry standards in terms of our financial health, accountability, and transparency.

Visit www.desertaidsproject.org. 

About U=U & Prevention Access Campaign

Prevention Access Campaign is a health equity initiative to end the dual epidemics of HIV and HIV-related stigma by empowering people with and vulnerable to HIV with accurate and meaningful information about their social, sexual, and reproductive health. Find out more here.

Undetectable = Untransmittable (U=U) is a growing global community of HIV advocates, activists, researchers, and over 990 Community Partners from 102 countries uniting to clarify and disseminate the revolutionary but largely unknown fact that people living with HIV who are on treatment and have an undetectable viral load cannot sexually transmit HIV.  

About UNAIDS 90-90-90

Removing barriers to ART is in support of UNAIDS 90-90-90, the global plan to end AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.

The goal is that globally,

90% of all people living with HIV will know their HIV status, and  

90% of all people with diagnosed HIV infection will receive sustained antiretroviral therapy, and

90% of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy will have viral suppression.

According to its 2020 update, “the response could be set back further, by 10 years or more, if the COVID-19 pandemic results in severe disruptions to HIV services.”

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DAP Focused on Equal Access to Lifesavin …

DAP Focused on Equal Access to Lifesaving Information During Pandemic 

(Palm Springs, CA) August 12, 2020 -- More than ever, people need information to make the best choices for their health, and DAP has launched two new resources on its website aimed at keeping our community informed in a timely manner.  

“The pandemic proves that access to healthcare and information has not been equal in every community,” said DAP CEO David Brinkman. “And that inequality is driving poor health outcomes for people of color and people living in poverty.”

Created by DAP subject matter experts, these resources provide need-to-know information for anyone interested in the services DAP is known for, as well as anyone looking for resources to report about DAP or Revivals Stores for news stories. Materials are offered in English and en Español. 

DAP is making information about its life sustaining services more available than ever by bringing our collection of patient literature onto our website with our new Community Health Resources page.  

Each piece of literature can be viewed or downloaded as a PDF to save or share.  And if you’re a member of the media looking for story resources like B-roll, stock photos, plus a lot more, our new online DAP Media Kit has many of the elements needed to tell new stories about DAP or Revivals Stores. 

We Support Vigorous Storytelling 

About DAP Online Media Kit 

The DAP Media Kit is your one stop resource if you are a member of the press working on a story about DAP or Revivals Stores.  

In addition to media contact information, the kit offers: 

  • help with your newsgathering efforts
  • information on setting up an interview
  • DAP and Revivals Stores logos, images, and video for your story
  • social media channels

What the Community Health Resource Page Provides 

Topics include a COVID-19, HIV, STIs, Transgender Health, HCV and more. They include: 

COVID-19 Resource Guide 

Thriving with HIV: 

  • Living with HIV
  • HIV After Diagnosis

Preventing new cases: 

  • HIV Prevention
  • PrEP
  • PEP

Transgender Healthcare 

  • Safer Tucking
  • Safe Binding 
  • Hormone Replacement Therapy 

Hepatitis C 

Sexual Health 

  • Chlamydia
  • Gonorrhea
  • Syphilis

Youth Resource Guide 

DAP has learned a lot in 36 years of providing healthcare to the Coachella Valley, with an emphasis on helping people with HIV thrive, and ending new transmissions in our community. We invite you to use and share the resources on these pages. If you would like more information on any health topic, please call to speak to a specialist at 760-323-2118

About Desert AIDS Project 

Desert AIDS Project (DAP) is a humanitarian healthcare organization in Palm Springs, CA offering DAP 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. DAP’s sexual health clinic, The DOCK, offers STI testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and HIV and HCV testing. DAP’s Get Tested Coachella Valley campaign, the nation’s first region-wide free HIV testing and access to care initiative, was recognized by the White House for helping to bring about an AIDS-free future. DAP has earned a “Four Star” rating from Charity Navigator for the twelfth consecutive year – landing DAP in the top 6% of nonprofits rated. The distinction recognizes that we exceed industry standards in terms of our financial health, accountability, and transparency. 

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

We can’t forget about HIV and STI …

We can't forget about HIV and STI epidemics

Sharing Decades of Know How Online

We’ve brought our collection of patient literature online, so that everyone can access and download information in pamphlet format from home. Written by staff, these resources provide need-to-know information for anyone interested in the services DAP is known for. Materials are offered in English and en Español. Topics include a COVID-19, HIV, STIs, Transgender Health, HCV and more. Click here to access the page to start downloading.

We Can’t Lose Fight With HIV Because of COVID-19

In June, our team tested and counseled three times as many people with new HIV infections, compared to any other month in the last year and-a-half. This tells us that the last five months of living in the “new normal” has made taking care of sexual health harder for people.

By using DAP’s new at-home HIV testing, no one has to put their health on hold if they are sheltering in place. Anyone interested in using this resource or with questions about accessing sexually health services should email testing@desertaidsproject.org or contact April Cruz at 760-656-8425.

Ongoing medical and behavioral healthcare, plus a lot of wellness services, are always offered when someone tests positive for HIV at DAP.

Spike in HIV and STIs

Our community’s health is threatened by steadily rising rates of HIV, syphilis, and chlamydia. Many DAP clients are feeling fatigued from socially isolating and nervous about coming indoors for testing and medical visits.

Before COVID-19, we were battling an STI epidemic in the Coachella Valley that hasn’t ended. June saw double new syphilis infections compared to May at DAP, and chlamydia has been on a rapid climb for six months.

Thanks to our Community Health team, our clients can continue routine STI and HIV testing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here

Plasma Donation Changes Lives

Our Associate Chief Medical Officer Dr. Tulika Singh never passes up an opportunity to pay it forward for others. After recovering herself, Dr. Singh wanted to make a difference by donating her plasma for a therapy that is helping the sickest COVID-19 patients.

“If I can help even just one person, that will be worth it.” She got her wish-- within 48 hours, she learned her plasma had reached two very sick people in need. 

Adding More to Grocery Delivery

So many of our clients who are sheltering-in-place are long-term HIV survivors, and they are re-experiencing PTSD from the worst days of the AIDS crisis.

Our food home delivery program has been helping them stay nourished with healthy groceries since March. Along with help from our Client Advisory Board, now we’re adding essential personal care and household cleaning items to these deliveries, starting next week. 

Everyday tasks like cleaning your kitchen countertop, and personal hygiene, help us stay healthier and more connected to living.

If you or someone you know are living with HIV and struggling to find support, please contact Guillermo Ramos at (760)323-2118.

This was made possible by our grants team, who saw this need and obtained funding through ‘HRSA Ryan White Part C-Covid’ to support the home delivery program to our patients and clients. We are so thankful for this vital help from HRSA.

Getting Re-Tested After Having COVID-19

Re-testing after you’ve had COVID-19 is a natural choice, but your doctor will know best when to re-test you, and which test to administer for the most accurate reading. Please call (760) 992-0407 if you’d like more information. You can read more in our updated Q&A on Coronavirus here.

Re-testing too quickly will not change your quarantine time, and it could provide false results. If you need follow-up care for symptom management, DAP is here for you. 

Spike in HIV and STIs Troubles Preventio …

Spike in HIV and STIs Troubles Prevention Experts at DAP

Palm Springs, CA (July 16, 2020) -- Steadily rising rates of HIV, syphilis, and chlamydia in the Coachella Valley are showing that the last five months of living in the “new normal” has interfered with people taking care of their sexual health. These rates pose a significant threat to our community, one that is already fatigued from socially isolating and nervous about coming indoors for testing and medical visits.

By using DAP’s new at-home HIV testing resources, clients no longer have to put their health on hold if they are sheltering in place. Anyone interested in using these resources or have questions about accessing sexually health services should email testing@desertaidsproject.org or contact April Cruz, Community Health Diagnostic Testing & Outreach Manager at 760-656-8425.

DAP Testing data from June shows why community health experts have reason to worry. According to DAP, there were:

  • Triple the amount of new HIV infections, compared to any other month in the last year and-a-half,
  • Double the amount of new syphilis infections compared to May,
  • Double the chlamydia cases (a six-month trend!).

“If we take our finger off the pulse of the existing HIV and STI epidemic, we will undo the progress we’ve made in preventing new transmissions,” said C.J. Tobe, Director of Community Health. “The lack of routine testing and treatment is only going to add to the tragedy of COVID-19.”

What Is A Syndemic?

Together, HIV, HCV and STIs create a syndemic—a set of linked health problems that interact synergistically and exacerbate poor health outcomes.

For example, having an STD increases the likelihood of acquiring HIV.  Among people who are living with HCV and HIV, HCV progresses faster and more than triples the risk for liver disease, liver failure, and liver related death. These epidemics are also driven by similar social and economic conditions and disproportionately impact many of the same disadvantaged communities.

DAP is part of End The Epidemics, a statewide working group of approximately 160 public health and community organizations urging Governor Newsom and the California Legislature to empower key stakeholders as soon as possible to fund and implement California’s strategy to end the HIV, HCV, and STI epidemics.

About End The Epidemics

The California HIV/AIDS Policy Research Centers, together with HIV, viral hepatitis, and STD community-based organizations across California, have launched a community-driven effort to inform development of a statewide plan to end the HIV, HCV, and STD epidemics in California. What makes this initiative innovative and unique – in addition to community leadership – is its ambitious goal of addressing these health conditions as a syndemic – a set of linked health problems that interact synergistically and exacerbate poor health outcomes. The syndemic approach differs from the biomedical approach in that it treats diseases concurrently and also addresses the social determinants of health that drive these epidemics. To learn more, visit: www.chprc.org/end-the-epidemics/

About Desert AIDS Project

Desert AIDS Project (DAP) is a Community Health Center in Palm Springs, CA offering DAP 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.  DAP’s sexual health clinic, The DOCK, offers STD testing and treatment for only $25 per visit, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and HIV and HCV testing. DAP’s Get Tested Coachella Valley campaign, the nation’s first region-wide free HIV testing and access to care initiative, was recognized by the White House for helping to bring about an AIDS-free future.  DAP has earned a “Four Star” rating from Charity Navigator for the sixth consecutive year – landing DAP in the top 6% of nonprofits rated. The distinction recognizes that we exceed industry standards in terms of our financial health, accountability, and transparency.

Transgender Care at DAP Is Here For You

Transgender Care at DAP Is Here For You 

Transgender residents in California seeking culturally competent, compassionate medical and behavioral healthcare in a stigma-free setting can always get it at DAP, with help navigating coverage through Covered California as well. 

Call (760) 323-2118or email TransCare@desertaidsproject.org for more information. 

We asked Anthony Velasco, Co-Chair of DAP’s Transgender Health Programto help allies understand a little more about transgender people’s experiences with healthcare, and how we all have an opportunity to help create spaces that all are welcome in. 

Question: Some in healthcare wear their pronouns on their nametags (i.e., she, her, hers) What does it mean to a trans person when they see this on someone’s name tag when they come in for services? 

Answer: Pronouns matter --- acknowledging someone’s pronouns and using their pronouns is a sign of respect and courtesy. Wearing our pronouns on our nametags, identifying the pronouns we use when we introduce ourselves, and adding pronouns in our signature lines also creates a safe space for individuals who have experienced misgendering or those who are afraid to be misgendered. Wearing our pronouns on our nametags also signals to our patient that --- we see you, we acknowledge you, and you are safe with us. 

Question: How can we help people understand why so many trans people face barriers to basic healthcare? 

Answer: We need to talk about the stigma experienced by trans people throughout their lives 

Cis-centered and heteronormative policies and practices greatly limit the resources and opportunities for them and their communities.  

Many have reported delaying preventative care due to discrimination they have experienced from their health care providers, including verbal harassment. Many also report having to educate their doctors about gender affirming care when it should be the other way around. 

I believe that gender-affirming care should be integrated in primary care, and that primary care clinicians should be able to provide gender-affirming primary care.  

Question: How do we create a world with more culturally competent healthcare clinicians providing reliable transgender care services? 

Answer: Stigma against gender-diverse individuals has permeated in different levels of our society, and we must fight it all. We start this by integrating LGBTQ-health related content in medical, nursing, and allied health curricula.  

At most colleges, the median number of hours in the medical curriculum on LGBTQ health is only 5 hours, and even less for nursing curriculaAt Desert AIDS Project, we enrich this, ensuring that nursing and nurse practitioner students, medical students, and residents are exposed to health-related issues unique to the LGBT community.  

Providing all team members an understanding of how transphobia, homophobia, and racism all have direct impacts on our clients’ health is a core training aspect with our future clinicians at DAP. By doing this, not only are we able to model the values of inclusiveness and diversity we stand for, but we also shape future clinicians to value inclusiveness and diversity once they start their own professions. 

More about HHS removing ACA protections  

The news about HHS removing ACA nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people for health care and insurance does not affect access to care and services at DAP.  

At DAP, we offer our transgender and non-binary community culturally competent, compassionate medical and behavioral healthcare in a stigma-free setting. We also help them navigate through Covered California, our state’s insurance exchange, for access to MediCal or other options. We do not turn anyone away because they don’t have insurance.  

Anyone can still access Transgender Care at DAP. Thanks to our own state’s insurance practices and civil rights law, LGBTQ people remain protected. Unfortunately, transgender people do not have the same rights across the U.S.  

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Get Access To the Care You Need

One Call is a service that can enroll callers in health insurance or Medi-Cal through Covered California, register them for medical and behavioral healthcare, and schedule their first appointment at DAP — all in approximately 45 minutes. This is a significant reduction in the amount of time this would normally take, thanks to a DAP Healthcare Navigator who will work one-on-one with each caller.

Callers can access One Call service by calling 760-992-0426, Monday – Friday, 9am – 4pm PDT.

Sexual Health Clinic - Palm Springs

1695 N. Sunrise Way Palm Springs, CA 92262

Monday - Friday 8:30 AM - 4:30 AM (Closed for lunch from noon-1:00 PM)

Call 760-992-0492 to schedule an appointment.

To reach our after-hours answering service, please call (760) 323-2118.

Free COVID-19 Antibody Testing From DAP …

Media Contact

Jack Bunting

(760) 323-2118

COVID-19 Triage Clinic Hotline:

(760) 992-0407

Free COVID-19 Antibody Testing From DAP at FIND Free Mobile Market Community Food Distribution

When: This Thursday, June 25, 2020, from 3:30 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Where: James O. Jessie Desert Highland Unity Center 480 W Tramview Rd, Palm Springs, CA 92262

This Thursday, DAP will be providing no-charge asymptomatic COVID-19 antibody testing and educational materials to the public during FIND’s free Community Mobile Market food distribution at the James O. Jessie Desert Highland Unity Center. This testing will take place from inside the DAP Mobile Testing Van.

DAP is committed to offering COVID-19 rapid antibody testing to our community, especially people facing financial challenges during this time. Our team will also be able to talk to anyone about our One Call program. This service helps people into insurance enrollment and healthcare services by making just one phone call to DAP at (760) 992-0426.

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed gaps in healthcare access in the United States. CDC data shows that the death rates among Black and LatinX people are much higher than for white people, in all age categories.

According to CDC data, Black Americans account for a higher proportion of new HIV diagnoses and people with HIV, compared to other races and ethnicities. In 2018, Black Americans accounted for 13% of the US population, but 42% of the 37,832 new HIV diagnoses in the United States and dependent areas.

For anyone interested, free HIV and HCV testing will also be available from DAP staff at that location that day. Community members who are unable to attend the June 25 event are encouraged to call DAP's COVID-19 Triage Clinic hotline to schedule a test by calling (760) 992-0407.

FIND Food Bank distributes food the 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month at the James O. Jessie Desert Highland Unity Center. DAP typically provides HIV and HCV testing at this venue, and regularly partners with FIND for the health of the community. Read more about FIND Food Bank here.

Accessing healthy food in the Desert Highland Neighborhood has always been a challenge for residents. But after public outcry and a supporting health study by Loma Linda University Health and Desert Health Care District, providing nutritious options for people there has become top-of-mind for local leadership and community organizations. Read more here.

Hurdles Accessing Enough Food

Food Insecurity is an economic or social indicator of the health of the community with a direct correlation to poverty levels and poor health outcomes. At least 50% of our clients receive Supplementary Security Income, based on disability, which renders them ineligible for the CalFresh food "stamp" program. Other clients who are eligible for Cal-Fresh receive $16-$30 per month; amounts that are insufficient to fully alleviate food insecurity. Since DAP's founding, food assistance has been a vital component of our integrated approach to service delivery, based on the Chronic Care Model, a system of care that emphasizes patient self-management skills, and the Patient-Centered Medical Home model, which facilitates partnerships between patients and their healthcare providers.

About Our Clients

DAP serves vulnerable low-Income persons and families living below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level inclusive of all races, ethnicities, gender orientation, and sexual identity, in addition to low-income people living with and at risk for HIV/AIDS (PLWHA). Over one-third of DAP's patients/clients who are living with HIV are aged 50 years and older. DAP is well aware of the needs of clients and patients confronted by numerous complications of surviving long-term with HIV, including subsisting on fixed incomes.

About Desert AIDS Project

Desert AIDS Project (DAP) is a Federally Qualified Health Center in Palm Springs, CA offering DAP 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. DAP’s sexual health clinic, The DOCK, offers STI testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and HIV and HCV testing. DAP’s Get Tested Coachella Valley campaign, the nation’s first region-wide free HIV testing and access to care initiative, was recognized by the White House for helping to bring about an AIDS-free future. DAP has earned a “Four Star” rating from Charity Navigator for the twelfth consecutive year – landing DAP in the top 6% of nonprofits rated. The distinction recognizes that we exceed industry standards in terms of our financial health, accountability, and transparency.

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

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Get Access To the Care You Need

One Call is a service that can enroll callers in health insurance or Medi-Cal through Covered California, register them for medical and behavioral healthcare, and schedule their first appointment at DAP — all in approximately 45 minutes. This is a significant reduction in the amount of time this would normally take, thanks to a DAP Healthcare Navigator who will work one-on-one with each caller.

Callers can access One Call service by calling 760-992-0426, Monday – Friday, 9am – 4pm PDT.

Sexual Health Clinic - Palm Springs

1695 N. Sunrise Way Palm Springs, CA 92262

Monday - Friday 8:30 AM - 4:30 AM (Closed for lunch from noon-1:00 PM)

Call 760-992-0492 to schedule an appointment.

To reach our after-hours answering service, please call (760) 323-2118.

Good mental health also vital in coronav …

Good mental health also vital in coronavirus pandemic. A therapist can help.

COVID-19 has triggered fear and grief for many as we grapple with multiple losses. The fear of getting sick, losing one’s job, paying the bills, not being able to protect or care for elderly parents, etc., is compounded by the loss of routine, familiarity, consistency, and confidence. Uncertainty and the disruption of daily norms only increases grief and anxiety. 

Now, more than usual, most of us could benefit from the expertise provided in therapy. People need support during this very challenging time, and mental health professionals are offering the tools necessary to help people cope.

The good news is that it's easier to access therapy now, because psychologists are using Virtual Visits and teleconferences to hold therapy sessions with their clients. Waiting lists are actually dwindling, and clients are getting help.

During this unprecedented time, therapy can help us distinguish the rational from the irrational. We may not even be consciously aware of own negative thoughts and how they make our situations worse. Therapists can help us identify the erroneous negative self-talk and faulty thinking that causes so much unnecessary emotional distress. 

We are able to increase awareness of this negative self-talk that causes stress, and develop a new, more accurate and positive perspective. Therapy provides a chance for people to think deeply about their emotional well-being, and prioritize their mental health. Collaboratively with the support of a therapist, we are able to face our fears and develop action plans that will move us through the paralysis of fear to empowerment. 

More than anything, psychotherapy is a reflective process that helps us better understand our experience so we can shape positive outcomes. Right now, we all need the opportunity to reflect on how COVID-19 has impacted us. It is a global, collective trauma the world has never seen in this century. It’s easy to become overwhelmed by the enormity of what we’re facing, and to slide into self-destructive behaviors. 

In therapy we learn how to engage positive coping skills instead of relying on destructive, negative strategies, such as overeating, or substance use. Therapists can assist us develop solutions to reduce stress. In the safety of a therapeutic alliance, we access internal and external resources and as a result, avoid negative consequences. 

Would you like to talk to a therapist in person or virtually? Desert AIDS Project offers essential therapy from wherever you are. Our therapists are here to care for you. Call (760) 992-0450 to find out more.

Get Insurance and Care with DAP — In J …

Get Insurance and Health Care 

One Call is a service that can enroll callers in health insurance or Medi-Cal through Covered California, register them for medical and behavioral healthcare, and schedule their first appointment at DAP — all in approximately 45 minutes. This is a significant reduction in the amount of time this would normally take, thanks to a DAP Healthcare Navigator who will work one-on-one with each caller.

Callers can access One Call service by calling 760-992-0426, Monday – Friday, 9am – 4pm PDT.

The DAP campus is open for in-person visits. Also, many clients have started connecting and accessing care with Virtual Visits, accessed through MyChart with their doctors and therapists as an alternative to coming to DAP in person.

Accessing great care from wherever they are, patients are using this easy tool on smartphones, tablets, PCs and Macs with an Internet connection and a web cam.

Rapid Antibody Test Added to DAP Protoco …

Rapid Antibody Test Added to DAP Protocol at COVID-19 Clinic

(Palm Springs, CA) -- April 22, 2020 -- Desert AIDS Project is adding rapid antibody blood testing to its current approach for testing patients at its COVID-19 Triage Clinic. Used in conjunction with swab diagnostic testing, the combination will provide more thorough information so that clinicians can provide patients with the individualized care they need.

Because of its detection of antibodies, the blood test can identify people with past infection, as well as those in the mid-to-late stages of the disease. The DAP Infectious Disease team is validating the test currently by pretesting a control group of DAP employees who have either tested positive for COVID-19 already or who are likely to be negative, without prior exposure.

On its own, the rapid antibody test cannot be used to diagnose or prove previous exposure to COVID-19, but it is an important step in understanding the complexity of this disease to combat it in our community.

Anyone who thinks they might be suffering from COVID-19 is invited to call (760) 992-0407 for information and the opportunity to talk to DAP clinician, who will determine if coming to DAP is the next best step for them.

“Speed is always important in a pandemic,” said Dr. Christopher Foltz, director of the COVID-19 Clinic. “Anything we can do more rapidly is definitely beneficial.”

That means a few things. Not only will the test enable clients to learn their results in as little as 10 minutes, it’s enabling clinicians like Dr. Foltz to begin piecing together the true progression of this disease in our community.

While it remains unproven if those who recover from COVID-19 build immunity, data from the new laboratory test will support work to determine how much of the Coachella Valley has been exposed to COVID-19, an important step in combatting the disease.

Dr. Foltz says he and his infectious disease colleagues at DAP are piecing together how COVID-19 is affecting the population of the Coachella Valley. This test will enable them to uncover additional important data that will support health organizations defeating Coronavirus.

DAP is NOT offering on-demand testing for asymptomatic clients at this time.

About the COVID-19 Clinic at DAP

DAP’s COVID-19 clinic is open to any community member experiencing symptoms, regardless of insurance coverage. With every visit to the COVID-19 Clinic, clients will be evaluated for multiple upper and lower respiratory diseases.

The process begins with a quick phone call to our COVID-19 hotline for assessment and scheduling. You must discuss your symptoms with a clinician by calling (760) 992-0407—they will advise you if you should come in for an appointment and will set it up for you.

We provide two appointment options for testing: drive-up testing or testing inside our clinic.  Your phone assessment will determine which option is right for you.

The COVID-19 Triage Clinic does not accept walk-ins.

The COVID-19 Clinic at DAP is the only clinic offering treatment for other respiratory illness that can present in a similar manner.

Treatment provided for upper and lower respiratory infections at DAP’s COVID-19 Clinic includes:

  • Oxygen Therapy for patients who have lower than normal levels
  • Nebulizer treatments to open airways and address shortness of breath
  • IV Fluids for dehydration
  • Fever control with medication
  • Community Acquired Pneumonia Treatment – Injection of antibiotics and ability to prescribe medications to our DAP Walgreens (overnight home delivery available)
  • Influenza A & B testing and treatment
  • Strep Throat testing and treatment

Location and Hours
COVID-19 Clinic at Desert AIDS Project
1695 North Sunrise Way in Palm Springs, Palm Springs, CA
Monday – Friday, 8am – 4:30pm

Before you arrive, call (760) 992-0407 to speak with a member of our care team.

Currently, 7,000 people in the Coachella Valley get primary and specialty care from DAP, plus other services like behavioral health, dentistry, wellness, and social services. Learn more at https://www.desertaidsproject.org/about-us/

 

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