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Dr. Tulika Singh co-authors major HIV cl …

Dr. Tulika Singh co-authors major HIV clinical research study

By Robert Hopwood

Published: June 18, 2021

DAP Health is gaining recognition from the clinical research trials underway at the health center.

The results from a clinical research trial that DAP Health conducted were published online in early June by the medical journal AIDS. Additionally, the results will be published in the printed journal.

Dr. Tulika Singh, associate chief medical officer and director of research at DAP Health, co-authored the published manuscript that reports the study's findings.

The ViiV Healthcare STAT Study researched if the antiretroviral drug Dovato could be used in a rapid start setting, said Greg Jackson, the clinical research manager at DAP Health. Study participants began the medication within 14 days of their HIV diagnosis.

ViiV Healthcare is a London-based pharmaceutical company. Its U.S. headquarters is located in North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park.

"We've now become a preferred site for ViiV Healthcare's research because of our successes," Jackson said.

The FDA will look at the data from the STAT study and decide if doctors can prescribe Dovato to people within days of an HIV diagnosis.

DAP Health recruited 14 adults for the STAT study, Jackson said. That was the third-highest number of participants recruited among the organizations conducting the study. In total, the study had 131 participants.

"It has been an exciting honor to be part of the STAT study and being able to contribute to the science and the success of the rapid start treatment regimen for Dovato," Singh said.

The STAT study, which concluded in 2020, will be presented at the 11th IAS Conference on HIV Science in July. It was one of several studies underway at DAP Health.

Currently, there are three active clinical research trials at the health center. DAP Health is studying whether patients can switch their current antiretroviral therapy drug for another, if a long-lasting injectable treatment for HIV can supplant a daily pill, and if screening and treatment of precancerous cells can prevent anal cancer.

The most recent study launched by DAP Health was the Biktarvy SWITCH Study, which began in May 2021. Singh and Jackson co-authored the study.

Participants in the study, which is open to HIV-positive patients aged 65 or older, will be switched from their current antiretroviral therapy to Biktarvy, which combines three HIV medicines into one pill.

"With the advent of successful treatment regimens, more than 25% of people with HIV will be over the age of 65 by the year 2030," Singh said. "We are studying HIV regimens, such as Biktarvy, to determine the benefits to quality of life in patients 65 and older."

Gilead Sciences Inc., a Bay Area biopharmaceutical company, is collaborating with DAP Health in the SWITCH study.

DAP Health wants to enroll 50 patients in the study. So far, the health center has enrolled two people in the clinical research trial.

"It is a lot of work to find these patients," Jackson said.

DAP Health also is in the course of the GSK/ViiV SOLAR Study and the ANCHOR Study.

The SOLAR study, a global clinical research trial, also is being done in collaboration with ViiV Healthcare. Recruitment for the study ended in June 2021.

Patients in the SOLAR study will switch their HIV medication for a long-acting injection, according to ViiV Healthcare. The goal is to develop an HIV treatment that offers patients more convenience; a treatment that is easier to adhere to; and an increased quality of life.

"The treatment of HIV has evolved tremendously over the past three decades to a point where patients can now get long-acting treatments rather than take a pill once a day," Singh said. "We are evaluating exciting regimens at DAP for safety and efficacy in where patients can get an injection once every two months to control their HIV."

The ANCHOR study, which is still accepting patients, is probing the best way to prevent anal cancer among people living with HIV. The National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health is funding the collaborative study.

More clinical research studies are in the planning process, but unfortunately, Jackson could not go into details.

Anyone who wants more information about any of DAP Health's research should contact Greg Jackson at (760) 992-0445 or gjackson@daphealth.org. 

Celebrating the Life of Marvin Sholl

Celebrating the Life of Marvin Sholl

Marvin Sholl, 93, of Rancho Mirage, CA, died peacefully on June 10, 2021, surrounded by his loving family.  He was born on June 21, 1927 to Louis and Jeanette Sholl in Chicago, IL, where he met and married his first love and wife of 56 years, Carol Phyllis Halper.  Carol preceded him in death, as did their beloved sons Scott and Barry Sholl. 

A lifelong car enthusiast, Marv turned his passion into his profession, running dealerships from a young age.  He was especially proud of being one of the youngest Jewish men to manage a Pontiac franchise in Chicago in the 1950s.  After moving to the Desert in 1976, Marv continued his long love affair with cars, and in 1981 opened Exotic Motor Cars in Palm Springs, where he never met a Rolls-Royce he didn’t like.  He was a proud Veteran of the United States Navy, serving during WWII, and always drove one of his signature cars in the Palm Springs parade.

After their youngest son, Barry, died from complications of HIV/AIDs, he and his late wife Carol became active volunteers with Desert AIDS Project (now DAP Health).  They both received recognition for their humanitarian efforts in the fight against AIDS, including the Warner Engdahl Community Service Award presented at the 2006 Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards. On World AIDS Day in 2016, the Marv Sholl Red Ribbon of Hope Award was established to honor his then 30-year commitment and presented at the Everyday Heroes ceremony, which Marv certainly was. 

   

In 2007 Marv met the second love of his life, his adoring wife, Ruth Ruffner.  Their late life love affair brought incredible joy to Marv as well as a whole new family that adored him.

Marv always had a twinkle in his eye, was quick with a joke, and was a generous friend.  When his grand children were young, they thought he must be the Mayor of Palm Springs, since wherever they went, he seemed to know everyone.  He loved and was loved by the many friends he made in the Coachella Valley. 

He is survived and will be forever missed by his beloved family: wife Ruth Ruffner; daughter Leslie Sholl Jaffe her husband David Jaffe, his grandchildren Dara and Gary Jaffe, and nephew Rick Sholl; as well as step-children, Sue Sherman and her wife, Pam Juhos; Richard Sherman and his children David, Greg and Jade. 

There will be a private Memorial Service at a later date.  However, to honor Marv’s memory, we request donations be made to DAPHealth.org.

 

8 reasons why it’s time to get the COV …

8 reasons why it’s time to get the COVID-19 vaccine 

Have you gotten the jab? 

More than half of Californians have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, according to the California Department of Public Health. 

Many of those who haven’t been vaccinated have reservations about getting the COVID-19 vaccine, which is understandable. The good news, however, is these vaccines have been thoroughly tested, and they’ve proven to be safe and effective 

The CDC recommends that people should get a vaccine as soon as possible. Unlike a few months ago, the state now has millions of doses available and has opened eligibility to those aged 12 and above. 

DAP Health offers two different COVID-19 vaccines (Moderna and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen). All eligible community members are now able to get one of these vaccines at our health clinic. 

Here are eight reasons why now is the best time to get vaccinated. 

  • Community matters. Be part of the solution. 
  • All COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the United States have been shown to be safe and effective at preventing COVID-19. 
  • Based on what we know about vaccines for other diseases and early data from clinical trials, experts believe that getting a COVID-19 vaccine helps keep you from getting seriously ill if you get COVID-19. 
  • Getting vaccinated yourself may also protect people around you, particularly people at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19. 
  • After you are fully vaccinated for COVID-19, you may be able to start doing some things that you stopped doing because of the pandemic. For example, you can gather indoors without masks with other people who are fully vaccinated. 
  • None of the COVID-19 vaccines contain the live virus that causes COVID-19, so a COVID-19 vaccine cannot make you sick with COVID-19. Learn more facts about COVID-19 vaccines. 
  • Getting COVID-19 may offer some protection, known as natural immunity. Current evidence suggests that reinfection with the virus that causes COVID-19 is uncommon in the months after initial infection but may increase with time. The risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19 far outweighs any benefits of natural immunity. COVID-19 vaccination will help protect you by creating an antibody (immune system) response without having to experience sickness. 
  • Hugs feel good. Everyone loves a hug from someone they love, especially if they’re vaccinated.  

If you or someone you know needs to be vaccinated, please make an appointment today at DAPHealth.org/vaccine-request. 

 

Five tips for staying active in the summ …

Five tips for staying active in the summer

By Robert Hopwood

Exercise is one of the pillars of good health, and the Coachella Valley offers us a wealth of outdoor activities to enjoy.

Unfortunately, during the summer, as the daytime high shoots well past 100, too many of us sit at home in the air conditioning and stream Netflix. Workouts get forgotten, and our health suffers.

With a bit of planning and creativity, that doesn’t have to happen.

There are options for people who step outside. Below are ways to add activity to your life and make the summer a little more enjoyable.

Take a hike

  • The Palm Springs Aerial Tramway (1 Tramway Road, Palm Springs) takes people up Mount San Jacinto, where you will find much cooler temperatures and more than 50 miles of hiking trails. More: pstramway.com or (888) 515-8726.
  • The Pacific Crest Trail is a 2,650 mile trail that runs from Mexico to Canada. It crosses the San Jacinto Mountains, where it’s much cooler than the desert, before dropping into the valley and cutting through a corner of Palm Springs. There is a trailhead along State Route 74, just west of Pinyon Pines. More: pcta.org.
  • Idyllwild is a resort community nestled in the San Jacinto Mountains. It’s known for hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking and horseback riding. 
  • Oak Glen, located in the San Bernardino Mountains, is known for its apple orchards, family picnics and hiking. 

Go for a walk 

  • Take an early morning walk around your neighborhood before it gets too hot. Late evenings are another option.
  • The Westfield Palm Desert mall (72-840 California 111, Palm Desert) has two floors where walkers can exercise during mall hours. More: westfield.com/palmdesert or (760) 346-2121

Jump in a pool

  • The Palm Springs Swim Center (405 S. Pavilion Way) features an Olympic-sized swimming pool for lap swimming. Reservations are required. More: bit.ly/swim-center or (760) 323-8278 and (760) 323-8279.
  • The Palm Desert Aquatic Center (730751 Magnesia Falls Drive) has three swimming pools, including one for lap swimming. Water exercise classes also are offered. Reservations are required. More: pdpool.com or (760) 565-7467.
  • Some local resorts offer residents the use of their pools. Rules and entry fees vary. Call to confirm the rules before you visit.

Practice yoga

  • The Urban Yoga Center, located at DAP Health (1695 N. Sunrise Way, Palm Springs), offers group classes, including at Ruth Hardy Park in Palm Springs. DAP Health patients and clients can exercise for free, but there is a fee for the general public. More: urbanyoga.org or (760) 320-7702.
  • Everyone can practice yoga. It can be done alone or in groups, inside or outside. You can find videos on YouTube or download apps to guide you through a workout.

Shake a leg

  • Step onto the dance floor at Agua Caliente Casino Palm Springs. Sunday Latin Nights kicks off weekly at 9 p.m. Nacho Bustillos and Quinto Menguante play salsa, cumbia, banda, bachata, reggaeton and pop. More: sparesortcasino.com or (888) 999-1995.
  • Dance workouts, which can be done indoors, are popular. You can find salsa dance workouts or Zumba classes online and on DVDs. More: To find a Zumba class, go to zumba.com.

Health Equity Won at The Steve Chase Hum …

Press Contact: 

Jack Bunting 

Jbunting@daphealth.org

(760) 656-8472 

Health Equity Won at The Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards 2021 

The 27th Annual Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards was a testament to the healing power of hope, inspired by mothers, as well as all DAP Health frontline workers and their tireless commitment to HIV care, COVID relief, and access to ongoing medical and mental healthcare. 

Mother’s Day 2021 was a perfect day to celebrate and raise awareness about increasing health equity and improving the public health at a time when our community needs it the most. 

Host Scott Nevins kicked off the show with aerial views of the DAP Health campus, and by wishing all moms a happy MotherDay. 

"Whether you're a long-time supporter or hearing our story for the first time tonight, we'll give you a glimpse into the comprehensive quality and preventive care we provide to the entire community. 

By sharing incredible stories of DAP Health’s impact from donorspatients, and volunteers from around the Coachella Valley, Mr. Nevins made good on his promise.  

Viewers were treated to uplifting performances by activist and legend, Shirley Lee Ralph and beloved recording artist Shoshana Bean. 

This year’s program was a celebration of the Hope Begins with Health campaign — a $2 million fundraising initiative to propel DAP Health’s frontline work. Its ever-expanding patient population needs it to focus on: HIV care, COVID relief, and access to ongoing medical and mental healthcare 

After a brief introduction, Mr. Nevins started the show by chatting with CEO David Brinkman in front of mural in the new Les Dames du Soleil Lounge, created to honor the comedy drag troupe. For yearsLes Dames du Soleil helped fund health access in The Coachella Valley for people with HIV (PWH) through ticket sales and donations from their performances. 

“Tireless humanitarians in high heels represent the story of DAP Health,” Mr. Brinkman said.  “It's grassroots, it’s the LGBTQ community and our allies combatting stigma and discrimination, fighting for health equity with love and fearlessness.” 

Mr. Nevins was quick to noteDAP Health’s wisdom and learning from the worst years of the AIDS crisis is driving new ways of increasing health equity today. 

With COVID, “I felt like yet, once again, history was repeating itself and DAP Health was there for the community,” Mr. Nevins said, “Stepping up during a pandemic to take care of their own.”  

The lounge was recently created as part of a promise to never forget DAP Health’s history. 

DAP Health Brand Emerged to Fight COVID 

A recent brand refresh and logo change took years of development and input from all stakeholders, and its 2021 launch came just in time for a community in distress. Mr. Brinkman was candid about why DAP Health’s approach to health equity is so essential today, and he included a challenge for everyone listening. 

“It’s COVID. It’s racism. It’s poverty,” Mr. Brinkman said. “Our country needs all partners of all human rights movements to come together, including the LGBTQ community, to step up, leverage all our knowledge, our assets, and to create health equity—period.”  

“It's our evolution,” he said. 

Providing healthcare based on patient needs rather than their ability to pay is necessary for health equity, and DAP Health’s new logo conveys its commitment to helping more people. 

“Our new logo conveys modernity, strength, freshness, and an innovative approach to healthcare--that it should be there for everyone,” Mr. Brinkman said. 

This year’s Steve Chase event was a celebration of survival and perseverance. An entire community worked through its fear to ensure medical services remained continuous for patientsAfter 15 months of weathering a pandemic that has killed more than 580,000 people in the U.S. alone, DAP Health has added even more patients for ongoing medical care. 

"Thousands of people in the last 12 months have come here seeking our help,” said Mr. Brinkman. "The response of our donors and volunteers and our staff have been to band together to treat the medical and mental health impacts of the last year. 

"The response has been challenging, but beautiful,” he said.  

Mr. Brinkman remained focused on addressing what it will take to deliver on health equity, COVID care, ending HIV, and mental health services.   

While great progress has been made, we’re not out of the woods yet. 

This year’s Chase amplified the Hope Begins with Health campaign, aimed at addressing four areas of need greatly affecting people over the last year, and expected to get worseDAP Health will: 

  • Increase our reach with HIV prevention, care and advocacy. 
  • Double the amount of mental healthcare services with more clinicians and a new Behavioral Health Clinic. 
  • Increase new medical healthcare patients, and offering them services to help with joblessness, food insecurity, and homelessness. 
  • Continue our COVID Clinic and hotline to ensure everyone can access preventioninformation and treatment. 

Board Chair Patrick Jordan helped everyone remember that funding care is still critical, even if things are different this year. He thanked everyone who donated. 

“Tonight's Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards might be a little different from years past, but the spirit of giving continues to honor the legacy of our event’s namesake, Steve Chase, he said. “To everyone who's donated so far, thank you.” 

Mr. Jordan acknowledged his event co-chairs Laurie Kibby and Kevin Bass, and he thanked DAP Health board member Scott Nevins for hosting the show. 

Board member Laurie Kibby explained how more people can be served since the brand evolution, supported by Hope Begins with Health. 

“The rebranding of DAP Health takes us out of one lane and puts us in multiple lanes and allows us to broaden our reach across the community,” Ms. Kibby said. “And Hope Begins with Health is a message for the entire Coachella Valley.”  

Kibby went on to cover an important topic many people don’t talk about; women living with HIV in our valley. Although local numbers skew towards white men who are middle agethis is hardly a complete picture of everyone. Her message?  

"There's a whole community of women throughout the entire Coachella Valley who are need of the same services that the men are,” Ms. Kibby said. “Those with HIV need help in finding support services. They need mental health support services. They need healthcare, they need dental care, and DAP Health provides all of that. 

Health equity also means giving women with HIV opportunities to overcome and avoid isolation, a health risk for PWH, especially womenFor DAP patient Lawanda Manigo, it has made all the difference. 

“When I came up into DAP Health, the support and the love and the community of not just women, also men, transgender people--just the whole community--was so welcoming, and so loving, and so supportive, and so ready to help to see me succeed, Ms. Manigo said. “Which helped me to believe that I could succeed and helped me to feel like even though I may be by myself a lot of times, I'm never alone. 

It was through DAP Health that I was able to get connected with other women who are experiencing some of the same issues that I'm going through. And that we're able to surround me with a community that I was able to discuss these issues with and that I can feel safe and secure with to discuss these issues. 

Women Brought Activism Through Art and Heart 

This year’s entertainers tugged at our heartstrings with moving vocal renditions of the classics, and powerful sentiments spoken from the heart. 

Sheryl Lee Ralph shared about how losing a third of her fellow cast members to AIDS as she became the first Deena Jones in Dreamgirls on Broadway, galvanized her to become an activist for ending HIVShe delivered an inspiring combination of When I First Saw You” and “Listen”. 

Shoshana Bean captivated the audience with renditions of "With A Little Help From My Friends” and “This Is Me. 

Messages of Love to Mom 

DAP Health frontline workers were featured giving video messages to their moms, and gratitude was the common thread.  

Dining Out For Life 

Palm Springs Dining Out For Life ranks in the top three fundraising markets in North America for the event. Thanks to more than 80 desert restaurants participatingevery year DOFL brings in about $300,000 for client services at DAP Health. Mr. Nevins encouraged everyone to help these eateries bounce back by remembering to eat local. 

"As a way to give back to them for their contributions, we're toasting all of them this evening and asking you our viewers to support these local eateries. 

Board member Kevin Bass explained why Dining Out For Life is so popular in Palm Springs and the Coachella Valley. 

“Dining Out For Life has become an event into itself where the community can come together, have fun, eat, drink, and enjoy themselves,” he said. “At the same time, supporting the amazing work of DAP Health.” 

Board member Athalie LaPamuk called on everyone to take a cue from the tourists. 

“We already have so many businesses that are skewed towards travelers,” she said.  “So, the best way to ensure that Palm Springs continues to thrive as a city is to do as the tourists do--as locals--and dine and drink out, and shop local, and support our own businesses.” 

A Special Appearance by Hometown Gem 

Keisha Howardson is known on stage as Keisha D. Her kids just call her mom, but her grandkids call her 'Punky’Besides her family, singing is everything to her. When COVID hit, one of Palm Springs’ most popular cabaret singers became so sick that she had been given a year to live.  

That was before she became a patient of Dr. Morris, DAP Health’s chief medical officer. He had a different message for Ms. Howardson.  

“Let's, let's talk about this, Keisha,” said Dr. Morris. “I'm here to help you live.” 

From there, the journey of care began, helped along with a lot of encouragement.   

From walking in to see Dr. Morris, and hardly being able to even talk,” Ms. Howardson said, “to Dr. Morris saying, trust me, you're going to be back on stage. I'm going to watch you on stage. I'm going to applaud you. I'm going to be there and applaud that day when you take that stage at the Purple Room again.’” 

Keisha is singing again these days.  

"I'm really thrilled and happy to be able to find that fighter inside of me, through the nurses and through the doctors at DAP Health,” she said. “Without their help, I probably would have been in a hospice situation, or maybe not even having this conversation with you today.” 

New Behavioral Health Clinic Serving Double in 2021 

Al Jones is a donor and on the Partners For Life leadership team, and he is in support of efforts to double capacity for mental health services at DAP Health with a new clinic. For him, this is personal.  

Al’s partner and husband of 26 years, Mark Bird, passed away after keeping his depression a secret. Help was all around them, but Mr. Bird’s depression led him to cease his HIV treatment without telling anyone.  

“Had we known we would have been able to get him the assistance that he needed,” said Mr. Jones. "DAP had the assistance, but we didn't know.” 

Debilitating depression in some long-term HIV survivors leads them to stop taking their medication, and the results are often fatal. The condition is being studied currently. Mr. Jones also believes that the COVID pandemic is placing many other people at risk because of depression and isolation, and he wants to make a difference 

In the Mark Bird Behavioral Health Clinic, people who need to be met where they are at in their mental and emotional health journey will be given the competent care they deserve, thanks to Mr. Jones. 

He also was eager to share his excitement about DAP Health’s mental health program leader, Dr. Jill Gover.  

There's somebody at DAP Health that you need to be aware of, and that's Dr. Jill Gover.  She's absolutely amazingShe's very sensitive, but moreover, she's very intuitive,” Mr. Jones said. “And that intuitive nature is what's so important in a therapist. To be able to match a client with the appropriate therapist is really an art that you can't replicate, unless it's really innate.” 

Dr. Gover explained why DAP Health is doubling its mental health capacity in 2021 with a new behavioral health clinic, and the new role everyday technology in connecting people. 

“We’ve seen tremendous demand as stress surges across the nation and across the world, and it’s no different here in Coachella Valley.” 

This pandemic has been very triggering for many, because it reminds all of us who went through those harder years, the early days of the AIDS epidemic, there's been a lot that has been brought up emotionally for long-term survivors, remembering those, those painful memories.” 

Other causes include needing to isolate and needing to be extra careful during COVID, because of the increased vulnerability and co-morbidities that long term survivors worry about. 

I think one thing that we learned from this pandemic is it's very important that we use the technology that we have available to us,” Dr. Gover said. “We were able to pivot quickly in this pandemic to telehealth and I don't see us going back.  

I think accessing technology in a way that increases availability is going to be increasingly important as we move forward, she said. “Because we know the need for mental health services will only increase as time goes on. 

Dr. Gover was brimming with gratitude as she thanked Mr. Jones, Partners for Life, and everyone who contributes to DAP Health. 

It's all of these contributions that make it possible for us to do our work here at DAP Health,” Dr. Gover said. And for that, I'm just enormously grateful. 

Health Equity Through Access to Healthcare 

DAP Health believes health equity takes the work of our entire community. Advocating for each other is improving health outcomes for everyone. A few of our allies joined us this year to talk about synergy with DAP Health. 

Western Wind Foundation 

Helping people who are overlooked by traditional philanthropy is driving Jeremy Hobbs, founder of Western Wind FoundationWhen he thinks of the potential locally, he wants to focus on what he calls building the ‘human infrastructure’ of the Coachella Valley. 

I want to work with organizations to help them get better, be able to better serve the people who are in need and who are working in the community. That makes the whole community better and makes all of us better. 

Questions he wants to answer are “How do we develop social strength? How do we develop economic strength? And how do we really let these communities be heard, make their own decisions about how they want to move forward and help them to do that?” 

Alianza Coachella Valley 

Health equity near the Salton Sea is priority one for Silvia Paz, founder and executive director of Alianza Coachella Valley 

When you're talking about health, I like to think about access to food, access, to recreational spaces, to safe living conditions,” Ms. Paz said. “On top of having access to see a doctor, there are very few of those options offered for the people who live surrounding the Salton Sea. Alianza Coachella Valley and DAP Health have a shared value of creating safe spaces for our communities. 

"We want to see the community surrounding the Salton Sea access health in all of its forms. Not just going to the doctor, but also having the built infrastructure. That's going to allow them to exercise, to eat healthy and to even have better mental health, she said.  

Help From Our Friends: Desert Regional Medical Center and Desert Care Network 

“DAP health, your team members are heroes. We're honored to be partnered with you,” said Michelle Finney, CEO, Desert Care Network. 

“Tonight, we commend DAP Health for its immediate and thorough pandemic response its experience with HIV AIDS allowed it to quickly transition to serve our community during the pandemic DAP provided not only additional healthcare services, but testing vaccinations, its counseling, tele-health and much more.”  

“Desert Regional Medical Center and Desert Care Network have enjoyed a long working partnership with DAP Health,” Ms. Finney said. “We share not only a history of caring for persons living with HIV, but also a commitment to serving the community.”  

How COVID Hotline Made A Difference 

When COVID hit, Dr. Ann Dew came out of retirement to volunteer her time and expertise for the response effort at DAP Health’s COVID Clinic, one of the first of its kind in California. 

Originally, we were just taking calls to take care of the people, get them scheduled for testing,” said Dr. Dew. “But then as more people became COVID positive and were discharged from the hospital, we also started keeping in touch with those people to make sure that they were doing well at home. 

The DAP Health COVID Hotline has been one of the only easily available sources for COVID information in the throughout the pandemic and continues serving callers today. 

Sometimes at the end of the day, when we get home, we were exhausted because so many of these people had questions about the virus,” Dr. Dew said. “And they had friends who didn't believe it and were in denial. 

Other callers had family members with COVIDand others were exposed to somebody at workNo matter what, Dr. Dew and her team were available with information and if necessary, an appointment. 

"It was good that DAP Health had the COVID Clinic because there were not any information posts throughout the Valley,” said Dr. DewEverybody else just set folks up for the testing. 

The COVID Clinic could not have moved as swiftly as it did to help protect Palm Springs, Palm Desert, and the whole Valley,” said Dr. Dew. “If it hadn't been for all of the donors.”  

All we can say is you have saved lives. You have touched hearts. And because of you, we were able to help people find peace in this quarantine that they may not have been able to find otherwise. 

HIV Expertise Prepared Us for COVID Fight  

Mike Fedderson anThomas McClay are donors and Partners for Life MembersTo them, offering COVID Clinic, plus expanding healthcare access for more people, is possible while working to end HIV. 

“The mission of providing help for HIV and AIDS is still a core principle, but not having universal healthcare means a lot of people go without healthcare and basic health needs,” said Mr. Fedderson. “In order to have a really healthy thriving community, everybody needs to have access to quality health care. 

DAP Health really fills that gap in the Coachella Valley,” he said. “It's critically important to the community, and therefore to me and my husband.” 

At Show’s Ending, Focus Remained on Mission  

Scott Nevins closed the show from a mountain hilltop and reminded viewers about DAP Health’s behavioral health expansion, its response to the COVID 19 pandemic, and its groundbreaking work in HIV care. He thanked viewers and donors, and once again wished a happy Mother’s Day to the audience. 

You can watch the The 27th Annual Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards at: Welcome to the 2021 Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards! 

About DAP Health 

DAP Health is an advocacy-based health center in Palm Springs, CA serving over 9,700 patients, offering medical and mental healthcare, STI testing and treatment, dentistry, pharmacy, and lab. A variety of services enable patients to experience optimal health, including social services, support groups, alternative therapies, and other wellness services. Excellent HIV care is provided by the largest team of specialized clinicians in the area. 

DAP Health opened one of California’s first COVID clinics and hotlines to offer screening, testing, and treatment. DAP Health is also working to improve social determinants of health to prevent negative health outcomes during this pandemic, like food and housing insecurity, joblessness, isolation, and access to ongoing healthcare. 

DAP Health’s sexual health clinic offers STI testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and HIV and HCV testing. DAP has earned Charity Navigator’s highest rating for the twelfth consecutive year – landing DAP in the top 6% of nonprofits rated. The distinction recognizes that DAP exceeds industry standards in terms of financial health, accountability, and transparency. 

The DAP Health Research Program is a leader in research that supports better health outcomes for people with HIV (PWH). The Program offers The ANCHOR Study at DAP Health, and research studies exploring antiretroviral medication and the effects of wellness on health. 

Visit www.daphealth.org to learn more. 

DAP Health Begins Expanded Mobile Health …

Media Contact:

Jack Bunting
jbunting@daphealth.org
(760) 656-8472

DAP Health Begins Expanded Mobile Health Services  

Palm Springs, CA (March 23, 2021) — DAP Health’s Mobile Testing team began the rollout this week of its new and ongoing program to bring healthcare, counseling and help with life essentials to people in parts of the Coachella Valley where barriers to healthcare are known to be the most challenging.  

Regardless of the reason, avoiding care is hazardous to health and well-being, and DAP Health is meeting increased isolation by getting behind the wheel.  

After almost two years of planning and help from a grant from Direct Relief and Pfizer last winter, the Mobile Testing team will now administer treatments for STIs, on-the-spot counseling and rapid antiretroviral treatments for HIV. The van also havideo conference capabilities so that patients can consult with DAP doctors, and intakes for social services can be done from inside the van. 

In the first day, 1patients were seen for vital testing and treatment, and the opportunity for ongoing care by becoming a patient at DAP Health. The van’s new capability is helping to destigmatize sexuality with a quicker and more discrete way of intimate medical care 

STI rates remain the highest they have been for California in three decades, and many in the Coachella Valley continue facing new barriers to care and treatment as COVID continues 

DAP Health’s Mobile Testing is a gateway to DAP Health’s main campus. The health center offers medical and mental healthcare by skilled clinicians who understand that asking questions and listening to patients is essential for giving them the best care possible 

“To increase health equity, DAP Health is bringing services to patients who face barriers with traditional healthcare settings,” said C.J. Tobe, director of Community Health. “We help them where they are in their journey of life to address their needs and co-create a plan.” 

Extra Help  

Some of the life essentials being offered during visits to the DAP Health’s Mobile Testing Van are:

Food: 

  • Supplying food cards to people who test for HIV and STIs. 
  • Providing protein bars and Gatorade to our homeless neighbors, specifically to those are who being released from the county program after leaving the hospital or prison system. 
  • Delivering food and essential items to people who are unable to shop due to health illness. 

Transportation: 

  • Providing a way to get to and from medical appointments and pharmacies with Lyft rides or gas cards or bus passes 

Technology: 

  • Cutting isolation by providing TracFones to access community resources and their care team at DAP Health.  
  • One-on-one guidance for using the TracFone as a videoconferencing device for Virtual Visits with DAP Health doctors. 

Accessing Medi-Cal and Insurance  

  • Assistance with health insurance or Medi-Cal (including through Covered California), medication programs and other programs that reduce out-of-pocket expenses.  

Education: 

  • Culturally competent education literature in hard copy and digital to distribute to community members. 
  • Instruction for HIV / STI prevention  
  • PrEP / PEP, PrEP 2-1-1, and Doxy for PrEP
  • Free condoms / lube 

Health Equity and DAP Health 

DAP Health works to improve social determinants that affect people’s health outcomes, all of which have been compounded by the pandemic — these include food and housing insecurity, joblessness, isolation, and access to health care.   

Read more about DAP Health, plus its expanding role in public health and health equity here 

To become a patient, click here. 

About The Pfizer Foundation 

The Pfizer Foundation is a charitable organization established by Pfizer Inc. It is a separate legal entity from Pfizer Inc. with distinct legal restrictions. The Foundation’s mission is to promote access to quality healthcare, to nurture innovation, and to support the community involvement of Pfizer colleagues.

About Direct Relief 

A humanitarian organization committed to improving the health and lives of people affected by poverty or emergencies, Direct Relief delivers lifesaving medical resources throughout the world to communities in need — without regard to politics, religion, or ability to pay. For more information, please visit https://www.DirectRelief.org.

About DAP Health

DAP Health is an advocacy-based health center in Palm Springs, CA serving over 9,700 patients, offering medical and mental healthcare, STI testing and treatment, dentistry, pharmacy, and lab. A variety of services enable patients to experiencoptimal health, including social services, support groups, alternative therapies, and other wellness services. Excellent HIV care is provided by the largest team of specialized clinicians in the area.       

DAP opened one of California’s first COVID clinics and hotlines to offer screening, testing, and treatment. DAP Health works to improve social determinants that affect people’s health outcomes, all of which have been compounded by the pandemic — these include food and housing insecurity, joblessness, isolation, and access to health care.  

DAP’s sexual health clinic offers STI testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and HIV and HCV testing. DAP has earned Charity Navigator’s highest rating for the twelfth consecutive year — landing DAP in the top 6% of nonprofits rated. The distinction recognizes that DAP exceeds industry standards in terms of financial health, accountability, and transparency.       

Visit www.daphealth.org to learn more.       

 

DAP Health Names Carol Wood Chief of Cli …

DAP Health Names Carol Wood Chief of Clinical Operations  

Palm Springs, CA (March 23, 2021) — DAP Health is delighted to share the advancement of Carol Wood to Chief of Clinical Operations, after she served as Director of Clinical Administration since 2017. Carol’s decades of experience in healthcare, coupled with her dedication to the mission of DAP Health, have enabled her to lead operations during this pandemic to continue serving 9,700 patients without fail.  

As Chief of Clinical Operations, Carol Wood will oversee multiple departments, including Medical, Dental, Behavioral Health and Registration. She will continue her key role in helping lead DAP Health's ongoing response to COVID, now entering its second year.  

During this past year, as DAP Health met the challenges of the evolving COVID crisis, Carol’s dedication and commitment never wavered,” says David Brinkman, CEO. Not only was she instrumental in the launch of DAP Health’s COVID Clinic, but her leadership is a major asset to the health of our community as we move into the next 12 months of responding to the impacts of COVID. 

She brings over 40 years of healthcare experience, having served in various executive leadership positions including acute care, skilled nursing, home health, hospice, and graduate medical education. 

“Carol has worked tirelessly during the COVID pandemic, connecting with the community and being that beacon of hope for so many during such an uncertain time,” says Carolyn Caldwell, president and chief executive officer of St. Mary Medical Center in Long Beach, California. Ms. Caldwell also serves on the Board of Directors at DAP Health as a board member. 

According to Ms. Caldwell, recent events including the COVID pandemic and civil unrest have brought even more emphasis on health equity, with a focus on diversity and inclusion.   

“At DAP we know, based on our experience, that the people we serve must be represented in the diversity of the people who lead and provide care,” says Mr. Brinkman.  “Two of the ways health equity is achieved are through cultural competence and hiring.” 

Despite making up 65 % of healthcare’s workforce, women only hold around 30% of medical leadership positions in the US. (Oliver Wyman) 

“I applaud DAP Health for their focus on diversity and inclusion and I would like to share a quote by Ruth Bader Ginsberg that I think is very appropriate,” says Ms. Caldwell. “’Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. It shouldn’t be that women are the exception. 

 About DAP Health  

DAP Health is an advocacy-based health center in Palm Springs, CA serving over 9,700 patients, offering medical and mental healthcare, STI testing and treatment, dentistry, pharmacy, and lab. A variety of services enable patients to experience optimal health, including social services, support groups, alternative therapies, and other wellness services. Excellent HIV care is provided by the largest team of specialized clinicians in the area.       

DAP opened one of California’s first COVID clinics and hotlines to offer screening, testing, and treatment. DAP Health works to improve social determinants that affect people’s health outcomes, all of which have been compounded by the pandemic — these include food and housing insecurity, joblessness, isolation, and access to health care.  

DAP’s sexual health clinic offers STI testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and HIV and HCV testing. DAP has earned Charity Navigator’s highest rating for the twelfth consecutive year – landing DAP in the top 6% of nonprofits rated. The distinction recognizes that DAP exceeds industry standards in terms of financial health, accountability, and transparency.       

Visit www.daphealth.org to learn more.       

About St. Mary Medical Center 

St. Mary Medical Center was founded in August 1923 by the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word to serve the healthcare needs of Long Beach and the surrounding communities. Today, the hospital and clinics continue to deliver quality medical services and programs. St. Mary’s commitment is to provide the best patient experience for everyone who needs care. 
 

More than 600 physicians and more than 1,350 employees work at Dignity Health St. Mary Medical Center. Therare clinics on campus for children, pregnant women, families and seniors, plus specialty care clinics. There are 389 patient rooms in the hospital, most of them private, single occupancy. 

 

  

 

 

 

 

The Trevor Wayne Pop Art Store and Galle …

The Trevor Wayne Pop Art Store and Gallery Supports Free Self HIV Testing

by Robert Hopwood

Artist Trevor Wayne wants more people to get tested for HIV, and he is using his popular storefront to make an impact.  

The Palm Springs artist has created four pieces of art to promote DAP Health’s free self HIV tests.  

The test kits can be mailed or picked up in person at the health center. The tests are a convenient, confidential way for people to determine their HIV status. 

People interested in a test kit have three options: by visiting DAPHealth.org, calling (760) 567-2431, or scanning the QR code on advertisements.  

“I think everyone should get tested because it’s the best way of stopping the spread of HIV,” Wayne says. “It’s also really important to know if you have any health issues because managing them early on will make things much easier.” 

Wayne’s artwork, which features doll heads and smiles, carries a simple message: “Free self HIV test mailed to you!”  

DAP Health is using Wayne’s art to promote the test kits on bus shelters and through dating services, online ad networks, social media and email.  

“What we want to do is bring more awareness to (the tests) because as of now, 49% of the Coachella Valley has not been tested,” Wayne says. 

DAP Health started its free self HIV test program in August 2020. 

Since then, they have sent out more than 100 kits a month, says C.J. Tobe, DAP Health’s director of Community Health. 

DAP Health follows up with everyone who requests a kit and provides counseling, Tobe says. They also connect people with resources, if needed. 

Having an artist like Wayne portray self-testing will help combat the stigma around HIV, Tobe says. 

“It’s really going to be able to get the message out there about knowing your status,” he said.  

Wayne’s artwork features pop culture themes and items, from horror movies to entertainment icons. 

“I pretty much just do what I find funny or amusing in the minute and pretty much hope that people get it,” he says. 

Wayne, whose art is sold in more than 120 stores, moved from Los Angeles to Palm Springs in 2017. In February 2020 he opened Pop Art! along Palm Canyon Drive. 

He says it’s an honor to be asked to create artwork for DAP Health.  

“It makes me feel like I’m a part of the community,” Wayne says. “It’s kind of nice that they trust my art to talk about such a subject in a way that makes it more approachable.” 

Health Equity Drives the 2021 Steve Chas …

Health Equity Drives the 2021 Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards  

Honoring the art of caring on Sunday May 9, 2021 starting at 5:30 p.m. PT 

DAP Health and community sponsors will host the 27th annual Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards, reimagined this year as a digital experience that will honor this community’s legacy of giving and the compassion of its namesake, all in a format that made safe and accessible for everyone.   

Registration is open: The 27th Annual Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards is May 9, 2021. Click here to register and keep up to date on all the details, celebrity entertainment, online auction opportunities and more. 

You can participate by tuning into NBC Palm Springs or by joining us on any of DAP Health's social media channels (Facebook, YouTube or Twitter).  

DAP Health’s largest fundraising event is in its 27th year and is named for one of our earliest financial supporters, the designer Steve Chase.   

“Making health equity a priority in this Valley through this pandemic calls for us to remember the spirit and lessons we learned from Steve Chase,” says David Brinkman, CEO. “DAP Health continues to be guided by his example of activism and giving, which saves and changes lives today. 

Themes in 2021 Serve the Greater Good 

This year's awards are a celebration of the Hope Begins With Health campaign — a $2 million fundraising initiative to propel DAP Health's frontline work. 

Our ever-expanding patient population needs us to focus on: health equity, COVID, mental health, and ending HIV.  

Health Equity Means Access  

Experts warn us that too many people are falling out of essential medical and mental healthcare, but throughout 2021 DAP Health is offering them solutions tailored for these times.  

  • Public health outreach to isolated patients will connect them to care based on need and not wealth, 
  • Added resource navigators will help more people access care with insurance, plus help with everyday living essentials,  
  • Mobile medical services will serve a wider patient population, 
  • Added home services will keep more patients feeling self-sufficient.  

Increasing Access Takes a Commitment to Cultural Humility  

We understand that cultural humility calls for us to be more curious, and much less set in our ways. Instead of a one-size-fits-all approach to accessing and engaging in healthcare, DAP Health believes that each person deserves a connection that works for them.   

To do this, we constantly examine our approaches. We lean in and get to know the cultural and social realities of our patients and clients by actively listening, so that we can offer them care and services that meet their unique needs 

DAP Health has been bringing people in the Coachella Valley health and inclusion since 1984 by identifying new and emerging public health needs of people who face disparities in accessing care, especially due to race, class and economic circumstance. 

Especially now, the intersection of race and health equity is one of the most important public health challenges facing this Valley and this nation 

Meeting the diverse needs or our community takes a lifelong commitment to question our own approaches, and the willingness to evolve.  

DAP Health was born out desperate need for innovation, which is why our history is one worth remembering and emulating. It calls for us to always be ready to embrace change, to continue making everyone feel welcome and wanted at DAP Health. 

COVID Response 

DAP Health opened one of California’s first COVID Clinics and over 9,700 patients have been seen. These services will continue, and in 2021 DAP is working to improve many social determinants of health that are preventing so many from better health outcomes during this pandemic. 

Food and housing insecurity, joblessness, isolation, and access to healthcare can have a considerable effect on COVID outcomes, compounded by factors like race, ethnicity, and LGBTQ status. (CDC) 

DAP Health joins with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to declare that beating COVID will require solutions that promote health equity. 

Behavioral Health Expansion 

Building health equity has always included restoring the sense of belonging that many people lose because they are different. Homophobia, racism, and COVID fatigue are top challenges causing isolation for many people. Health experts warn that this is a serious health risk 

Throughout 2021  the DAP Health Behavioral Health department is doubling its capacity to see patients for individual and group therapy by California licensed clinical psychologists and licensed clinical social workers.  

Thriving with HIV and Ending the Epidemic 

DAP has the region’s largest team of HIV-specialized doctors with expertise in aging and thriving with HIV, and although the word “AIDS” no longer appears in the DAP Health logo, providing care to people with HIV (PWH), and ending the HIV epidemic, remain core to DAP Health.  

Despite COVID, providing more HIV testing and better treatment for PWH remains essential to ending the HIV pandemic. We will continue offering free self HIV-test kits to anyone who requests one.  

We are cutting the time between diagnoses of HIV and entry into care for patients in 2021, and are making medication available quicker, a move to prevent people from falling out of care. We know this will also help decrease HIV transmission rates. 

Patients can count on us to help them stay healthy and untransmittable to others. They become part of the DAP Health family beginning with testing, to linkage into care, and then being enrolled in medical and mental healthcare, dentistry, social services, and prescription access.  

Find Out Why Hope Begins with Health 

The economic impact of COVID on our community is not just a change in financial circumstances. The implications have far-reaching consequences on medical and mental health. Click here to explore our Hope Begins With Health campaign and find out how DAP Health is meeting the needs of our patients and clients during this pandemic, and how you can help. 

About DAP Health  

DAP Health (DAP) is an advocacy-based health center in Palm Springs, CA serving over  9,700 patients, offering medical and mental healthcare, STI testing and treatment, dentistry, pharmacy, and lab. A variety of wraparound services enable patients to experience optimal health, including social services, support groups, alternative therapies, and other wellness services. Excellent HIV care is provided by the largest team of specialized clinicians in the area.      

DAP opened one of California’s first COVID clinics and hotlines to offer screening, testing, and treatment. DAP is also working to address social determinants of health that are causing negative health outcomes during this pandemic, like food and housing insecurity, joblessness, isolation, and access to ongoing healthcare.  

DAP’s sexual health clinic offers STI testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and HIV and HCV testing. DAP has earned Charity Navigator’s highest rating for the twelfth consecutive year – landing DAP in the top 6% of nonprofits rated. The distinction recognizes that DAP exceeds industry standards in terms of financial health, accountability, and transparency.      

Visit www.daphealth.org to learn more.      

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Including Sex Workers for Health Equity

Including Sex Workers for Health Equity 

Stigma and criminalization have always created barriers for sex workers seeking safety, healthcare, and services, and DAP Health is increasing outreach to this community for care and a variety of ongoing services. The Community Health department has started recruiting for community health educators with sex worker experience, a move to continue building cultural competence in a community growing more desperate for relief as the pandemic continues 

With social distancing causing in-person business to drop off, and criminalization of their work making collecting unemployment impossible, sex workers are facing increased health equity challenges that threaten them and their partners. 

“We understand and care about people who survive through sex work,” says C.J. Tobe, Community Health director. “Stigma surrounding sex is very much alive and this pandemic has exacerbated the spotlight on it.” 

STI rates remain the highest they have been for California in three decades, and many in the Coachella Valley continue facing new barriers to care and treatment as COVID continues.  

Current and former sex workers experience more violence, legal involvements, and social stigmatization than most people, making it harder to obtain healthcare. Other serious barriers are closely linked to poverty, substance use, disability, immigration, sexism, racism, transphobia, and homophobia. Experts say due to this, opportunities to access mental health resources are considered extra beneficial for sex workers, although they are usually unavailable. 

So Much More Than Medical Care 

Throughout 2021,  the DAP Health Behavioral Health department is doubling its capacity to see patients for therapy by California licensed psychotherapists, as well as a variety of peer groups. The team is skilled at addressing many of the challenges affecting sex workers, and services are available in-person as well as via Virtual Visit.  

DAP Health's holistic model aims to address social determinants that lead to negative health outcomes, especially those related to the pandemic — this includes food and housing insecurity, joblessness, isolation and access to health care.   

Read more about DAP Health, plus its expanding role in public health and health equity here.   

To become a patient, click here.  

About DAP Health  

DAP Health (DAP) is an advocacy-based health center in Palm Springs, CA serving over 9,700 patients, offering medical and mental healthcare, STI testing and treatment, dentistry, pharmacy, and lab. A variety of wraparound services enable patients to experience optimal health, including social services, support groups, alternative therapies, and other wellness services. Excellent HIV care is provided by the largest team of specialized clinicians in the area.       

DAP opened one of California’s first COVID clinic and hotlines to offer screening, testing, and treatment. DAP is also working to address social determinants of health that are causing negative health outcomes during this pandemic, like food and housing insecurity, joblessness, isolation, and access to ongoing healthcare.   

DAP’s sexual health clinic offers STI testing and treatment, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), Post-Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP), and HIV and HCV testing. DAP has earned Charity Navigator’s highest rating for the twelfth consecutive year – landing DAP in the top 6% of nonprofits rated. The distinction recognizes that DAP exceeds industry standards in terms of financial health, accountability, and transparency.       

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