Northwell Health has opened an HIV-prevention clinic for adolescents and young adults in Queens thanks to a five-year, $1 million grant from the New York State Department of Health.
The clinic, located at 37-03 92nd Street in Jackson Heights, provides HIV testing, resources and services including PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) – a preventive medication for use by HIV-negative people who have a high-risk for infection.
Teens and young adults are among the groups most at risk for HIV infection and sexually transmitted diseases, according to statistics.
“There are certain hotbeds within Queens, specifically Far Rockaway, Jackson Heights and Astoria, that actually have higher incidents of HIV than the rest of the borough,” said David Rosenthal, DO, PhD, medical director for the Center for Young Adult, Adolescent and Pediatric HIV Care at Northwell Health. “By reaching into Queens we’re providing resources that Northwell Health has never been able to provide regarding HIV prevention in that area which gives patients access to the top of the line services that Northwell offers.”
Patients are given a risk assessment for both HIV and other sexually transmitted infections at the clinic. From there, a plan is individualized for them. Clinicians target behaviors for some patients while others are given condoms or even prescribed PrEP, which is a pill taken daily to prevent acquiring HIV.
“Most young adults don’t go to see the doctor four times a year, but when you’re on PrEP you come to see the doctor every three months,” said Dr. Rosenthal. “This also helps allow for more rapid diagnosis of other sexually transmitted infections because we’re able to see patients on a regular basis.”
The clinic is currently open on Tuesday afternoons, but Dr. Rosenthal expects to increase its hours of operation in the near future. For more information about the clinic, call 718-484-2005.
About Northwell Health
Northwell Health is New York State’s largest health care provider and private employer, with 21 hospitals and over 550 outpatient practices. We care for more than two million people annually in the metro New York area and beyond, thanks to philanthropic support from our communities. Our 61,000 employees – 15,000+ nurses and nearly 3,400 physicians, including nearly 2,700 members of Northwell Health Physician Partners – are working to change health care for the better. We’re making breakthroughs in medicine at the Feinstein Institute. We're training the next generation of medical professionals at the visionary Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine and the School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies. And we offer health insurance through CareConnect. For information on our more than 100 medical specialties, visit Northwell.edu.