HIV Services

What is HIV?

Human  

Immunodeficiency

Virus 

is a virus that weakens a person’s immune system by destroying important cells that fight disease and infection. If left untreated, a person can begin to develop AIDS (Autoimmune Deficiency Syndrome). AIDS is the fourth stage of the HIV infection. Once a person has developed AIDS, their immune system becomes so weak that they can no longer fight off diseases. Although there are current on-going studies for a vaccine, there is currently no cure for HIV. HIV is considered a chronic disease. This means it requires lifelong treatment. An individual receiving proper HIV medical care, can live a long and healthy life. People can live with HIV for years without any signs and symptoms. Not every person with HIV will go on to develop AIDS.


 

How Can I Prevent HIV? 

Friends of Family Health Center strives for comprehensive, culturally sensitive care. With our HIV team we vow to work towards reducing the prevalence of HIV within our service areas. We believe all people should have the knowledge and sufficient care to improve their quality of life. This means providing them with preventative care and education.


 

HIV Transmission                           

In order for HIV to be transmitted it must get from the body of a HIV positive person into the body of another person.

HIV is found in:

  • Blood
  • Semen
  • Vaginal Fluid
  • Breast Milk
  • Rectal Secretions (rectal discharge) Friends.png

Transmission can occur through:

  • Unprotected sexual contact
  • Sharing of needles to inject drugs
  • Blood transfusions (in countries where there is no screening)
  • Mother to baby during pregnancy, birth, or breastfeeding

HIV Prevention            

HIV can be prevented. Much like Covid-19, in order to fight the HIV Epidemic we must all work together and become better informed on preventative measures.

HIV can be prevented by: prevent.png

  • Limiting the number of sexual partners and engaging in protected sex.
  • Getting HIV tested regularly (Friends of Family offers free HIV/STD Testing).
  • Never sharing needles.
  • HIV medications that are used as a way to prevent HIV Transmission. These medications include PrEP and PEP.

 PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis)

  • PEP is the use of antiretroviral drugs after a single high-risk event to stop HIV acquisition. PEP must be started as soon as possible to be effective—and always within 72 hours of a possible exposure.
  • Taking PEP will not protect you from other sexually transmitted infections or unplanned pregnancy. PEP is to be used under emergency measures only.
  • If the at risk for HIV transmission encounter happens during our clinic’s non-operational hours, please go to your nearest Emergency Room or Urgent Care.

PrEP Medication             

PrEP is a prescribed antiretroviral (ARV) medication that is given to HIV-negative people in order to prevent HIV transmission. PrEP was first approved for use in the United States in 2012.

Prep.png

PrEP works by stopping HIV from taking hold and spreading throughout the body. By taking PrEP the individual reduces the chance of getting HIV from having sex without a condom, and from sharing needles or equipment to inject or use drugs. This medication can be taken orally or by injection.


 

   What is the Eligibility Criteria for PrEP?

HIV Negative

  • Individual must be HIV negative prior to PrEP.No Suspicion/symptoms of acute HIV Infection.
  • HIV usually develops within 2-3 weeks after someone acquires HIV.

At substantial risk of HIV Exposure

  •  An HIV negative person who has shared needles or drug preparation equipment within the past 6 months.
  • An HIV negative person who has frequent unprotected sex with multiple partners.

Willingness to use PrEP as prescribed

  • Friends of Family believes that you are in complete control of making own decisions for your sexual health. We are not here to force, only to support.

Creatinine Clearance

  • Ensures the client’s kidneys are working properly.

Paying for PrEP

The majority of PrEP treatment costs are covered by most health insurance programs (including medical). It's as ordinary as paying for any other prescription for many folks. If you're uninsured or can't afford your out-of-pocket payments, the patient assistance programs listed below may be a great resource. The Federal Poverty Level (FPL) is used in each program to determine a person's income.

https://www.gileadadvancingaccess.com/copay-coupon-card

https://copays.org/funds/hiv-aids-and-prevention/

https://panfoundation.org/disease-funds/hiv-treatment-and-prevention/

https://www.mygooddays.org/patients/diseases-covered/hiv-aids-treatment-and-prevention

https://apretude.com/apretude-cost/

 


 

 Viviana E. Lomeli                                                                          HIV Education Line

 HIV Community Outreach Coordinator                                                                                   909-903-3733 

 vlomeli@fofheathcenter.org                                                                                                    Call us for any PrEP/PEP/HIV

 562-501-1746                                                                                                                         preventative related question

                                                                 

 Hours of Operation:

 Monday-Friday 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

 


 

Refrences

AIDS Healthcare Foundation. (2022, March 24). HIV Education is Prevention – Learn More on HIVCare.org. HIV Care.                                   https://hivcare.org/hiv-basics/?gclid=CjwKCAjw_b6WBhAQEiwAp4HyIKORC5jTcrIp0_gXQyio1uwUk_96Zb5iDN-                             hvOjmkbAvyRwDFQLIARoCIn4QAvD_BwE

Weiss R. A. (2000). Getting to know HIV. Tropical medicine & international health: TM & IH5(7), A10–A15. https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-3156.2000.00591.x

HIV basics. HIV.gov. (2022, June 8). Retrieved June 9, 2022, from https://www.hiv.gov/hiv-basics 

(2022). Retrieved 2 June 2022, from https://www.cdc.gov/hiv/default.html.