Posts Tagged ‘PrEP’

Photos From Our High Score Hijinks Pride Kickoff

Friday, June 3rd, 2022

On Thursday, June 2, 2022, HVCS held a fundraiser and awareness-raiser for our Men’s Services Program and PrEP Program, in honor of Pride Month. Happy Valley, an arcade on Main Street in Beacon, generously donated the space, all quarters played in their classic video games, and proceeds from signature cocktails. We owe them a huge thanks! We appreciate everyone who came out to support us and to kick off the Pride season.

PrEP Aware Week

Friday, September 17th, 2021

PrEP Aware Week Learn more about PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) to prevent HIV infection and how to get it here.

CDC, NYS Recommend Meningococcal Vaccine for All HIV+ Individuals & Those At High-Risk

Friday, October 28th, 2016



The CDC and the New York State Department of Health says that people who are HIV+ or are high risk for becoming HIV+ are at increased risk for invasive meningococcal disease (IMD). They are recommending that adults who are HIV+, children older than 2 months who are HIV+, and those at high risk for new HIV infection (especially those who are good candidates for pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, which includes men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender people) should get a meningococcal vaccine.

The vaccine is covered by Medicaid, ADAP and private insurance.

Invasive meningococcal disease is a serious bacterial infection caused by the bacterium Neisseria meningitidis. The bacteria can invade the body causing serious illness, like meningitis. It can also cause septicemia—an infection of the bloodstream. Bacterial meningitis is very serious and can be deadly. Death can occur in as little as a few hours. While most people with meningitis recover, permanent disabilities such as brain damage, hearing loss, and learning disabilities can result from the infection.

Detailed Information:

In response to epidemiological data indicating increased risk for certain sub-types of invasive meningococcal disease (IMD) among people living with HIV, updated recommendations regarding meningococcal vaccination have been issued by the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP).

Specific vaccine recommendations are available for young children living with HIV, persons living with HIV and also persons at high risk for HIV infection, including people taking/ eligible for PrEP, including transgender individuals and MSM.

Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) voted to recommend that persons aged ≥ 2 months with HIV infection should receive meningococcal conjugate (MenACWY) vaccine, either MenACWY-D (Menactra®), MenACWY-CRM (Menveo®) or, as age-appropriate, Hib-MenCY-TT (MenHibrix®, recommended for ages 2-18 months).1

This recommendation was made based on epidemiologic data demonstrating an increased risk of invasive meningococcal disease (IMD) due to serogroups C, W and Y among HIV-infected persons in the United States.

HIV-infected persons have not been demonstrated to be at increased risk of serogroup B disease, and use of serogroup B (MenB) vaccine has not been studied in this group; for this reason MenB vaccine is not recommended for HIV-infected persons unless they have another indication for this vaccine.

HIV-infected individuals have suppressed immune responses to MenACWY vaccine, as well as waning of vaccine-induced immunity. For this reason, a multi-dose primary series and regular booster doses are necessary to maintain protection against IMD.

In response to the ACIP recommendations, the NYSDOH advises healthcare providers to administer MenACWY vaccine to:

  • All HIV-infected children and adults aged 2 months or older, and
  • HIV-negative individuals at ongoing high risk for HIV infection, to include
  • Men who have sex with men (MSM) who are candidates for HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) as described in the NYSDOH AIDS Institute Guidance for the Use of Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis to Prevent HIV Transmission”2 and Transgender individuals who are candidates for PrEP.

Vaccine costs and administration fees for HIV-positive individuals are reimbursable through the New York State Medicaid program and the AIDS Drug Assistance Program, as well as private insurance. MenACWY vaccine is covered under the Vaccines for Children (VFC) and Vaccines for Adults (VFA) programs for eligible children and adults.

MenACWY vaccine is also an allowable State Aid expense under Article 6 for LHDs unable to recoup the costs of vaccination through billing. Healthcare providers are reminded to report immediately both suspect and confirmed IMD cases to the LHD where the patient resides. Do not wait for laboratory confirmation to report. Contact information for LHDs can be found at

Healthcare providers are reminded to immediately report both suspect and confirmed IMD cases to the local health department where the patient resides.  Clinicians with questions regarding vaccine recommendations should contact the NYSDOH Bureau of Immunization at or 518-473-4437 or the AIDS Institute Office of the Medical Director at 212-417-4536.

Read the full announcement from the New York State Dept. of Health (PDF)

Safer Sex & PrEP Workshop for Men

Thursday, July 28th, 2016

Safer Sex & PrEP Workshop for men at the LOFT, August 30, 2016

NYS HIV Infections Reach Historic Low; More Funds for PrEP Announced

Thursday, July 14th, 2016

In case you missed this week’s big news from Albany, Gov. Cuomo announced that estimates of new HIV infections for 2014 show a decrease of 41% from 2006. Estimated new HIV infections were fewer than 2,500 for the first time. The estimated HIV incidence rate (that is, the rate of people living with HIV, per 10,000 residents) fell 43% since 2006.

NYS HIV Infections, 2006-14

New estimates also report that 123,000 New Yorkers live with HIV, as of the end of 2014. About 10,000 do not yet know they are HIV-positive (8%). While this is good news overall, the report also estimates that only 62% of HIVers are virally suppressed (they have an undetectable viral load) and are, theoretically, incapable of infecting others. NYS would like to increase this percentage while continuing to decrease new infections to less than 750 per year by 2020.

Gov. Cuomo also announced an additional $4 million in funding to spread awareness of PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis). The NYS Department of Health unveiled new videos to educate the public about PrEP and a new website,

HVCS offers PrEP referrals, information and support, so please contact us if you’re thinking about going on PrEP to stay safe from HIV. These are trends we want to see continue!

NYS Dept of Health Debuts New PrEP Website & Video Series

Thursday, July 14th, 2016

The AIDS Institute announced two new exciting resources on Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV.

PrEP for Sex Video Series

This series of eight videos highlights the voices of men who are currently taking PrEP to prevent HIV infection.

Honest, forthright and insightful, these videos address the following topics:

  • Is PrEP Right for Me
  • Beginning the Process
  • Affordability
  • Remembering to Take PrEP
  • Condom Use
  • Why PrEP
  • Side Effects
  • PrEP and Emotions

PrEP Website

The AIDS Institute also unveiled a new website to unite the video series and public service announcements:

There is also a new text-message campaign. Users can text the word “PREP” to 69866 for personalized PrEP recommendations and resources.

The Latest on PrEP: Educational Inservice (Newburgh)

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015



All interested community members and service providers are welcome to attend. Complimentary lunch provided. Please RSVP for either session to Anthony at (914) 785-8277 or via email.

The Latest on PrEP: Education Inservice (Hawthorne)

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015



All interested community members and service providers are welcome to attend. Complimentary lunch provided. Please RSVP for either session to Anthony at (914) 785-8277 or via email.

Debating Truvada’s “99% Effective” Rate for HIV Prevention

Monday, July 21st, 2014

(Excerpted from the New York Times)

Truvada, the once-a-day pill to help keep people from contracting H.I.V., is on the cover of this week’s New York magazine, and Tim Murphy’s cover story focuses on how the pill is changing sex by drastically reducing gay men’s fear of infection.

It’s not hard to see why: Mr. Murphy writes, “When taken every day, it’s been shown in a major study to be up to 99 percent effective.” This is a claim I hear thrown around a lot among gay men in New York. And it’s wrong. The 99 percent figure isn’t a study finding; it’s a statistical estimate, based on a number of assumptions that are reasonable, but debatable.

Here’s how the estimate was reached: A major study of men who have sex with men, called iPrEx, found that H.I.V.-negative men who were prescribed daily Truvada were 44 percent less likely to contract the virus than those who were given a placebo. But a great many of the subjects did not take their prescribed medication regularly, or at all. Of 48 iPrEx subjects who were assigned to take Truvada and contracted H.I.V. anyway, just four had any detectable level of the drug in their system when they were diagnosed, indicating a 92 percent reduction in risk for people who were actually taking the medicine.

Read the full story at