DORCHESTER, Mass.—On World AIDS Day, December 1, 2016 Codman Square Health Center (CSHC) is launching a new service, “Same Day PrEP” to fight AIDS by preventing HIV infections. Same Day PrEP will provide an HIV-preventive medication, Truvada, for HIV PreExposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), on the same day to people with high risk of becoming infected with HIV.
Codman Square Health Center is the first location in Massachusetts to offer a same day PrEP service, eliminating the delays in scheduling and waiting for lab results that are barriers for some patients to receive this important service. People calling for Same Day PrEP will be connected with the PrEP navigator who will assist them through the process including on site 4th Generation HIV testing and receipt of their medication through our pharmacy.
PrEP is a once-a-day pill that reduces the risk of becoming infected with HIV. When taken as directed, PrEP is over 90% effective at preventing HIV infection. PrEP is part of a comprehensive plan to reduce HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). PrEP is available by prescription and Insurance providers, including MassHealth, cover the cost of PrEP—and assistance is available for those who need it.
Despite medical advancements in treatment over the last 30 years, HIV/AIDS continues to threaten the health and well being of many individuals, particularly Black/African American and Hispanic Latino/a men and women across the United States. Data from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) reports that as of January 1, 2015, there are 19,737 people living with diagnosed HIV in Massachusetts. Out of the 5,744 people living with diagnosed HIV in the City of Boston, 40 percent identify as Black (non-Hispanic), and 19 percent as Hispanic/Latino yet nationally only about 10% of patients on HIV PrEP are African American. Access to PrEP services has been a barrier for many patients to get this important prevention service.
If current diagnosis rates persist, approximately 1 in 20 black men, 1 in 48 black women, and 1 in 2 black gay, bisexual men, or men who have sex with men (MSM) will be diagnosed with HIV during their lifetimes, according to a recent CDC projection.
Codman Square Health Center is able to launch this service thanks in large part due to grants from Massachusetts Department of Public Health, and a Partnerships for Care grant from HRSA. PrEP is an important part of the national HIV/AIDS strategy. People who want to learn more about PrEP can reach our PrEP navigator at (617) 822-8350 or email [email protected].
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About Codman Square Health Center:
Codman Square Health Center was founded in 1979 by a group of community visionaries seeking to restore their neighborhood on the brink of disaster. Today, with a staff of over 300 employees and an astounding depth and breadth of community programs and partnerships, the Health Center serves as a resource for improving the physical, mental and social well-being of the community. Our comprehensive, wraparound services are built upon our Patient-Centered Medical Home model and include primary care, urgent care, dental care, eye care, behavioral health, and nutrition. For more information, visit www.codman.org.
[From a News Release]