Montefiore Honors LGBTQ Community for Pride Month
By Dr. Barry Zingman, Medical Director of the AIDS Center at Montefiore and Justin Toro, Practice Manager from the Montefiore Oval Center
For the entire month of June, a historic piece of LGBTQ History will hang in the Montefiore Moses, Wakefield, and Weiler lobbies: three panels of the 48,000 that make up the AIDS Memorial Quilt, which has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize and is the largest communal art project in the world.
The Montefiore AIDS Center was the first New York State Department of Health designated expert HIV care site and continues to provide the most comprehensive HIV care, support, testing and prevention services of any site in New York.
We currently provide care to over 3,300 people living with HIV each year, the largest HIV care clinic in NYS. Each year we see about 300 new patients including about 100 who are newly diagnosed with HIV, others who are out of care, and many others who are transferring their care to us.
The AIDS Center is a multidisciplinary, multi specialty site with services including HIV primary care, gynecology, prenatal care, dermatology, psychiatry, mental health counseling, nephrology, adherence and retention services, advanced contraceptive care, partner services, substance abuse services, case management, nutrition services, nursing, and clinical trials.
Many groundbreaking achievements in the HIV/AIDS epidemic were developed at Montefiore’s AIDS Center. We were the first to show that heterosexual transmission of HIV could occur, and the first to show that HIV could not be transmitted by casual contact within a family or home setting. The latter finding was key at helping to decrease the stigma around HIV and to allow people living with HIV to have more normal lives with their family and friends. The AIDS Center has contributed to groundbreaking studies of just about every HIV treatment ever available and pioneered the model of comprehensive HIV care that is now used whenever possible.
We are the largest single-site HIV care program in NYS, and have recently expanded with the newly opened The Oval Center, a center of excellence in The Bronx for HIV prevention care including PEP and PrEP, STI screening and treatment and LGBTQ care.
This year we will be starting a new HIV program at The Oval Center site for LGBTQ individuals aged 16-30 and their HIV+ and HIV- partners – the first sexual health care site in New York to integrate HIV care as well as care across the spectrum of those living with or at risk for HIV.