Undectectable=Untransmissible (U=U) Media Campaign Launched In Harlem

February 9, 2023

NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem today announced it launched a monthlong social media campaign to raise awareness about its Retention and Adherence Program (RAP).

This helps New Yorkers living with HIV access safe and effective treatment so they achieve viral load suppression and become undetectable. The campaign promotes the message Undetectable = Untransmittable (U=U), meaning that people living with HIV who achieve and maintain an undetectable viral load cannot sexually transmit the virus to others, and it urges potential patients who may not be in treatment between the ages of 18 and 64 living in Harlem, Washington Heights, and the South Bronx to call 212-939-3911 to make an appointment to learn more about the program and antiretroviral therapy (ART). While appointments are encouraged, walk-ins at the Family Center Clinic (on the second floor of the hospital’s Kountz Pavilion located at 15 W. 136th Street) are also welcome Monday through Friday between 9 A.M. and 5:00 P.M. The campaign is funded by a $40,000 grant from the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH).

“At NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem, we have always been at the forefront of treating people living with HIV and AIDS, and we are committed to getting New York City to zero new infections. Through support and treatment our RAP program helps our patients achieve undetectable viral loads,” said NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem CEO Georges Leconte. “We will continue to be clinical leaders in this effort, shoulder-to-shoulder with our patients and community.”

“I’m very proud of the many services NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem provides to people living with or at risk for HIV,” said NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem Chief of Infectious Disease Medicine Dr. Sharon Mannheimer. “This campaign is an exciting way to raise awareness of our Harlem programs and about the benefits of HIV treatment and adherence, including U=U.” 

“U+U allows me to do my part in putting an end to the spread of HIV and eliminate some of the stigma associated with the illness. Since being undetectable for 10 years, I have a sense of security and the freedom to love without the risk of infecting my partner, because I adhere to taking my medication every day. U=U HELPS KEEP HOPE ALIVE,” said clinic patient Vanessa. “Today I am living a healthy, productive and prosperous life.”

“I appreciate the help and how you check on me,” said an anonymous patient. “I learned about the medication and it helps.” 

“RAP” helps New Yorkers living with HIV obtain health insurance for their visits and offers education, support, and monitoring. There is no cure for HIV but most people can get the virus under control within six months by taking medicine as prescribed by a healthcare provider. Treatment reduces the amount of the virus in your body and helps you stay healthy. People who maintain an undetectable viral load for at least six months cannot transmit HIV through sexual activity. Harlem Hospital clinicians can offer people living with HIV many HIV treatment options, including daily single-pill regimen or long-acting injectable treatment. Similar regimen options are also available for preventing HIV. HIV treatment does not prevent transmission of other sexually transmitted diseases.

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The clinic also offers HIV testing, testing for sexually transmitted infections, Pre-exposure and post-exposure prophylaxis for HIV prevention, plus many services for people with HIV, including treatment of Hepatitis B and C, vaccinations (including for COVID and monkeypox), on-site mental health care, on-site gyn care, case management, and nutrition services. In addition, the clinic also provides pre-travel consultation and Yellow Fever vaccination for individuals planning international travel.

For more information about “RAP” visit: https://www.nychealthandhospitals.org/harlem-services/hiv-services/

NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem

NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem is a 282-bed hospital that provides a broad array of preventive, primary, and acute care services, including general medicine and medical subspecialties, general surgery and surgical subspecialties, infectious diseases, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics and neonatology, burn and critical care, radiology imaging and nuclear medicine, rehabilitation medicine and physical, speech, and occupational therapies, psychiatry and substance abuse services, dental and oral surgery, and emergency adult and pediatric services. The hospital serves as a Burn Center and Level II Trauma Center, with Centers of Excellence for Bariatric Surgery, Breast Imaging and Sexual Assault Forensics, and a designated Stroke and AIDS Center, as well as being a World Health Organization-Designated Baby Friendly Hospital. NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem is among 11 public hospitals serving New York City as part of its public health system, NYC Health + Hospitals. For more information, visit www.nychealthandhospitals.org/Harlem or call 212-939-1000.

NYC Health + Hospitals

NYC Health + Hospitals is the largest municipal healthcare system in the nation serving more than a million New Yorkers annually in more than 70 patient care locations across the city’s five boroughs. A robust network of outpatient, neighborhood-based primary and specialty care centers anchors care coordination with the system’s trauma centers, nursing homes, post-acute care centers, home care agency, and MetroPlus health plan—all supported by 11 essential hospitals. Its diverse workforce of more than 43,000 employees is uniquely focused on empowering New Yorkers, without exception, to live the healthiest life possible. For more information, visit www.nychealthandhospitals.org and stay connected on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/NYCHealthandHospitals or Twitter at @NYCHealthSystem.

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