From Our President
just a few weeks, we’ll mark World AIDS Day on
December 1. First observed in 1988, this
annual commemoration is an opportunity to remember those we have lost, offer
support to the millions living with HIV/AIDS worldwide, and rededicate
ourselves to ending the global pandemic.
Promising biomedical prevention breakthroughs in recent years like the iPrex
and HPTN 052
studies have given many new hope that the end of the epidemic may be within
reach. Read more.
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1340 Boylston Construction Update
The build-out of the fourth, fifth and part of the sixth floors at Fenway Health’s Ansin Building continues on schedule and will be completed in the coming weeks. As you’ve probably heard, we’re building out the fourth floor for additional medical space for additional providers and new services such as digital imaging, bone density screenings and mammograms. The fifth floor will be built out to accommodate the rapidly expanding work of The Fenway Institute. We are also doubling the size of the Dental department on the sixth floor.
You can see photos of the progress on our Fenway Focus blog. You may remember that last month, it looked like a lot of metal and concrete. This time, we’re getting closer to the finished product. Stay tuned for more information on when you can start booking appointments for the new services!
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Health Advisory: New York City Meningitis Cases Among Men Who Have Sex With Men (MSM)
The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) has issued a health alert in response to a recent outbreak of meningococcal meningitis among men who have sex with men (MSM) in the New York City area. In short, there have been nine cases of this potentially deadly disease among gay or bisexual men in 2012 in New York City, including cases this past month. Meningococcal meningitis is spread by close contact—this includes kissing and other sexual activity, but also sharing utensils or drinking glasses or cigarettes. There have been no cases of meningococcal meningitis among MSM in the Boston area.
BPHC’s current recommendation is for any MSM—but especially any MSM who are HIV positive—who travel frequently to NYC to consider getting vaccinated.
For HIV positive MSM age 55 years or under, the recommendation is to receive two meningococcal meningitis vaccines spaced about eight weeks apart.
For HIV positive MSM age 56 years or over, only one meningococcal meningitis vaccine is needed.
For HIV negative MSM, only one meningococcal meningitis vaccine is needed.
Read more and find links to resources regarding meningococcal meningitis on our Fenway Focus blog.
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14th Annual Audre Lorde Cancer Awareness Brunch Educates, Connects, and Inspires Attendees
On October 27, more than 100 people gathered for the 14th Annual Audre Lorde Cancer Awareness Brunch at Fenway Health.
This event serves as a place for women to connect, learn about cancer-related issues, and nourish mind, body and spirit. This year’s theme “Sharing Stories to Build Community: Nurturing the Creative Parts of Each Other” inspired attendees to share their experiences, laugh, cry and celebrate strength and survival.
The program was emceed by Dr. Yvonne Gomez Carrion of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Dean Renée White of Simmons College gave a keynote address, speaking to the importance of sisterhood and advocacy for our own health. Attendees danced as RN Debbie Lyn Toomey presented Healthy Steps, a movement program designed to improve overall wellness for anyone, including cancer patients and survivors who may have limited mobility. Youth performers from Books of Hope and the Young Women’s Health Leadership Academy offered a touching spoken-word performance that earned them a standing ovation and reminded everyone that Audre Lorde’s message continues to resonate loud and clear. Read more.
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November 12 – 19 marks Transgender Awareness Week in Massachusetts, culminating on November 20 with the Transgender Day Of Remembrance. The Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition has a listing of local events on their web site here and Fenway Health and The Fenway Institute are hosting two of those events at our 1340 Boylston Street location.
Living Well Presents: Celebrating Diverse Trans Masculine Sexualities November 13, 6 to 8 p.m., Fenway Health, 9th floor conference center, 1340 Boylston Street, Boston. A Community Dialogue for Gay/ Bisexual/ Queer Transgender Men and Trans Men Who Have Sex With Men (TMSM). More information online.
"I AM: Trans People Speak" Fenway Video Release Party: A Trans Awareness Week Event November 14, 6 to 8:30 p.m., Fenway Health, 1340 Boylston Street, 10th Floor Auditorium, Boston. We are pleased to premiere Fenway Health’s contribution to the national campaign: “I AM: Trans People Speak” developed by Jesse Begenyi of Anchors Aweigh Media and the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition. The “I AM” project raises awareness about the diversity within transgender communities. More information online.
Be sure to keep an eye on our blog and our social media sites (Fenway & Borum Facebook; Fenway & Borum Twitter) for daily updates during Transgender Awareness Week.
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Fenway hosts book signing for 'For People, Not For Profit: A History of Fenway Health's First Forty Years'
Author Tom Martorelli will discuss his book, ‘For People, Not For Profit: A History of Fenway Health’s First Forty Years’ and sign copies at a Friday, November 16 book signing event in Fenway’s Health’s 1340 Boylston Street auditorium from 5 to 7 p.m.
Based on research, interviews with over thirty historic and current Fenway leaders, and his own experiences on the health center’s Board of Directors in the 1970s, this real-life history covers the evolution of Fenway Health, the community health center movement, our community’s response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and the emerging field of LGBT health. Martorelli spent nearly two years interviewing people from across Fenway’s forty year history, digging through our archives and putting pen to paper to produce a book chock full of photos and personal reflections. You can read more about Tom and the book on his Wordpress blog site, forpeoplenotforprofit.com
Reduced price copies of the book will be available for purchase at $10 for the softcover version and $20 for hardcover. Refreshments will be served.
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This past July, Fenway Health took part in the International AIDS Conference held in Washington, DC. Our researchers and medical staff came back home from the conference with hope for the future, but also with an urgent need to address today’s HIV and AIDS concerns.
The work of The Fenway Institute was featured prominently at the conference. A critical study focused on the HIV infection rate of Black gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM). We are seeing disproportionate numbers of new infections in specific communities, especially in Black MSM, in which infection rates are 50% higher than in White men who have sex with men. The rates are even more startling for the younger population - Black MSM 30 years and younger are contracting HIV at 3 times the rate of their White counterparts. What’s so important about this is that only by identifying communities where health disparities occur can we develop programs to help.
You may also recall that The Fenway Institute was part of a landmark study which showed a pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) drug that can reduce the risk of spreading HIV from a positive to negative person by up to 90%. This past July, the FDA approved this PrEP pill, called Truvada, for use in preventing the transmission of HIV to previously uninfected individuals. This is by far the most promising breakthrough in HIV infection prevention, and scientists at The Fenway Institute helped lead the way.
Your support of Fenway Health enables us to continue this cutting-edge research and to plan for future outreach and prevention. Lives are being saved and fewer people are being infected by HIV thanks to your gifts in support of our work. You make a difference in the lives of so many.
We are almost complete with our build-out at 1340 Boylston Street, which will expand both The Fenway Institute and our clinical space. This means we’ll be able to expand our work on HIV/AIDS research, advocacy, outreach, and care. Your support helps make all this possible. Donate today to help shape the future of HIV and AIDS, and hopefully one day put an end to this tragic epidemic.
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A Word From One of Our Sponsors
At State Street, we are firmly committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace — wherever we operate across the globe. As a leading financial services provider to some of the world’s most sophisticated institutions, we know that our strength comes from the variety of perspectives each employee brings. Not only does this philosophy drive our success today, it will continue to serve us well in the future.
Our Global Inclusion initiative supports more than 30 employee networks, including State Street Global PRIDE, which provides personal and professional development opportunities for the company's gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community.
We are stronger together and proud to support Fenway Health.
To learn more about how State Street supports equality in the workplace, visit www.statestreet.com/better.
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