Alliance for Positive Change: The Positive Life Workshop

Alliance for Positive Change: The Positive Life Workshop

The Alliance for Positive Change invites you to apply to the Positive Life Workshop.

Are you struggling with your treatment adherence?

Are you newly diagnosed?

Out of medical care?

Or in need of social support?

Come join The Positive Life Workshop! Learn how to take control of your health, cope with stress, deal with life issues, learn safer sex and much more!

We provide breakfast, lunch and roundtrip Metro Cards each day! Graduates will receive a $50.00 gift care and certificate upon completion of all scheduled training days!

For more information call our team at (212)- 645-0875.

Malika x404, Ashley x434, Diane x459, or visit us at Alliance Midtown Central

64 West 35th Street, Third Floor (Between 5th and 6th Avenue)

Disclaimer: This information comes directly from the Alliance for Positive Change handout and I give them full credit for it. Please call the above numbers for more information on the program.

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Tattoos, Piercings and Other Body Art: How your dermatologist can help

Tattoos, Piercings and other body art: How your dermatologist can help.

If you are considering getting a tattoo or other body art, it is a good idea to speak with your dermatologist. Even if you already have body art and are thinking about adding more, a talk with your dermatologist is still a good idea. Your dermatologist can help out.

*Separate fact from fiction.

*Make an informed decision about body art based on your medical history.

*Reduce your risk of having a bad experience.

Why is my medical history important?

If you have a skin condition, getting a tattoo or piercing could increase flare ups. Some patients who have psoriasis see flare ups where they get tattoos. Other patients have a higher risk of developing a raised scar after getting a piercing.

Medication is another concern. Taking a corticosteroid or medicine that weakens the immune system can increase your risk of infection after getting a tattoo or piercing. Your dermatologist can tell you if your skin condition or medication increases your risk for possible side effects.

What skin reactions can occur?

Getting a tattoo or piercing increase a person’s risk of developing the following:


This is a raised thick scar. A keloid can form on newly tattooed or pierced skin. Keloids are more common in African Americans and people who have a family history of these scars. No one is sure why keloids form. Some researchers think the body overreacts when the skin is injured.

If you develop a keloid, you should see your dermatologist. Treatment can reduce the size and sometimes help improve the appearance of the scar. Keloids can be stubborn though and do not always respond well to treatment.


Body art punctures the skin. Any time you puncture your skin., you increase your risk of getting an infection. If you have any of the following symptoms after getting a tattoo or piercing, see a doctor right away:

*Red swollen skin

*Skin feels warm tender

*Foul-smelling discharge

*Green or yellow discharge


Waiting to see whether you get better can increase your risk of developing a serious or life-threatening infection.

*Allergic Reaction:

Some people have an allergic reaction to jewelry inserted during a body piercing. Some jewelry contains nickel. Many people are allergic to nickel. Others have an allergic reaction to tattoo ink.

If you develop an allergic reaction, your skin  will be itchy and red where you have a tattoo or where the jewelry touches your skin. This reaction can occur shortly after getting the body art or years later.

If you develop red, itchy skin where you have a tattoo or piercing, you should see a dermatologist. Allergic reactions rarely go away without treatment and can worsen. However, tattoo ink cannot be easily removed. As a result, an allergy to tattoo ink can be difficult to treat.

What can I do to reduce my risks?

There is not such thing as a totally risk-free piercing or tattoo but getting your body art done at a reputable studio can reduce your risks. The best way to find a reputable studio is to visit the studio and ask questions. Before making an appointment for body art, ask someone who works there if the artists use:

*An Autoclaved:

This device sterilizes equipment and other supplies. Staff should use an autoclave to disinfect non-disposable equipment after each use. If the studio does not have an autoclave, look for another studio.

*A commercial disinfectant or bleach solution:

This is necessary for disinfecting items too big to fit in an autoclave. Anything that an artist might touch while working on you should be disinfected. This includes drawer handles, tables and sinks. Be sure to ask what they disinfect.

*New, Sterile Equipment:

The artist should use a new, sterile needle for each piercing. If you’re getting a tattoo, watch the tattoo artist. Make sure the needles and tubes come from sealed packages. Inks should be poured into a single-use disposable container. The tattoo artist should throw out unused ink.

*Surgical Gloves:

Hand washing and disposable surgical gloves are essential. Make sure the artist who works on you washes his or her hands and puts on new surgical gloves before beginning. If you have a latex allergy, ask the artist to use non-latex gloves. If the artist touches something unsterile while working on you, such as the telephone, more hand washing and new gloves are necessary.

If you want a body piercing, you also should find a studio that uses the following:

*Single-use piercing gun:

You should not get a piercing from a piercing gun unless the part of the gun that touches your skin is both sterile and unused (never been used on someone else). Most piercing guns do not fit in an autoclave.

*Hypoallergenic Jewelry:

Nickel, cobalt and white gold often cause an allergic reaction. To avoid an allergic reaction, ask for jewelry made from one of the following:

*Surgical-grade stainless steel


*14 or 18 karat yellow gold

*A metal called niobium

When getting a tattoo or body piercing, it also is important to consider that there is  a risk of exposure to blood-borne diseases. These diseases occur when the infected blood of another person mixes with your blood in your body. This could occur if needles or instruments are not sterilized and are contaminated with infected blood. You can contract tetanus, hepatitis B, hepatitis C or HIV (human immunodeficiency virus).

Asking questions may make you feel uncomfortable. At reputable studios, artist understand that people have questions and they should take the time to answer your questions. Asking questions and getting the right answers is one of the best ways to lower your risk of infection, scarring or allergic reaction.

Can I get rid of a tattoo?

If you no longer want a tattoo, you should talk with your dermatologist. Dermatologists have the medical expertise and experience to remove tattoos. Some tattoos can be removed completely. Nearly all tattoos can be faded.

Most patients who want a tattoo removed will receive a series of laser treatments. If laser treatment is not an option for you, a dermatologist may recommend another treatment. Smaller tattoos are sometimes removed surgically. Dermatologists also have the medical knowledge to help you avoid potential side effects from tattoo removal, such as burns, scars and infections.

Before recommending a treatment a dermatologist considers many factors. One factor is how deeply the ink penetrates your skin. If the artist placed the ink very deeply in the skin, a laser may have a more difficult time reaching it.

Your dermatologist also will consider the colors in the tattoo, where the tattoo appears on your body and whether you smoke. Research shows that laser tattoo removal is less successful if the person smokes.

A board-certified dermatologist is a medical doctor who specializes in treating the medical, surgical and cosmetic conditions of the skin, hair and nails. To find a board-certified dermatologist in your area, visit or call this toll-free number (888) 462-DERM (3376).

Disclaimer: All this content solely developed by the American Academy of Dermatology. This information was taken from the American Academy of Dermatology pamphlet and I give them full credit for the information. Please call them directly for more information.


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Bacterial Vaginosis: What Women need to Know

Bacterial Vaginosis: What Women need to Know

New York State Department of Health

What is Bacterial Vaginosis?

Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) is a common vaginal infection. It affects one of every five women of childbearing age.

What causes BV?

A normal, healthy vagine has mostly healthy or “good” bacteria and very few unhealthy or “bad” bacteria. BV develops when the pH balance or level of acidity in your  vagina is upset. This change allows the “bad” bacteria to increase 100 to 1000 times more than normal. At the same time, the “good” bacteria are destroyed.

Women who are sexually active are much more likely to get BV. But, it is not known if BV is spread through sex. You may have a greater chance of getting BV if you use douches or if you frequently clean your vagina with soap or other products. Douching and frequent cleaning may rinse away or destroy healthy bacteria and let “bad” bacteria take over.

What are the signs and symptoms?

More than half the women with BV don’t know they have it. If symptoms are present, they are usually mild.

Symptoms may include:

*A thin, gray or white discharge that sticks to the walls of the vagina.

*An unpleasant, fishy or musty odor.

*Burning when urinating

*Occasional vaginal itching and

*Vaginal irritation during or after sex

Bacterial Vaginosis can sometimes lead to Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID). PID is when a woman’s reproductive system gets infected and may include infection of the uterus, tubes, ovaries or even inside the lower belly (abdomen).

How will I know if I have BV?

To know for sure, you should visit a health care provider. He or she will give you a pelvic exam and look at your vaginal fluid under a microscope to check the levels of “good” and “bad” bacteria. The pH level of your vagina may also be measured.

When can I have sex again?

If you have been for BV you should not have sex for seven days after your treatment is over.

Is there is a cure?

Yes. BV can cured with antibiotics. Your provider will give you either metronidazole (me troe ni da zole) or clindamycin (klin da mye sin). If you are given either medicine as a pill, it is taken by mouth. Either can be used with non-pregnant women but the dosages differ for each. You should not drink alcohol if you are taking metronidazole. Each medicine is also available as a cream or gel. The creams and gels are used directly in your vagina. It is important to take all of your medicine even if the signs and symptoms go away.

It is even more important that you get treatment if you are pregnant. All pregnant women who have ever had a premature delivery or low birth weight baby should be considered for a BV examination, regardless of symptoms and should be treated if they have BV. If you are pregnant or you think you are pregnant, see your healthcare provider.

Most of the time, treatment lowers the number of “bad” bacteria in your vagina. But it will not totally get rid of them. In some women, the bacteria can multiply and cause BV to come back.

What about my partners?

Although it is not known whether BV is spread through sex, you partner(s) should be checked for BV and other sexually transmitted diseases. This is even more important if your BV keeps coming back.

How can I prevent bacterial vaginosis?

*Use a latex or polyurethane condom every time you have sex. This may lower your chances of having this infection again.

*Limit the number of sexual partners you have.

*Do not douche or forcefully clean your vagina with soap or other feminine hygiene products. These products might upset your vagina’s normal balance of “good” and “bad” bacteria.

To learn more:

If you have more questions about bacterial vaginosis or you want to know how to find a clinic near you, call your local health department or family planning program.

You can also find a testing center near you at or by calling 1-800-541-2437.

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Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from  the NYS Department of Health’s Bacterial Vaginosis pamphlet and I give them full credit on the information. Please call them directly for more information.

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American Red Cross: Smoke Alarms Save Lives!

American Red Cross: Smoke Alarms Save Lives!

American Red Cross Home Fire Campaign

Protect your family from Home Fires!

The American Red Cross Home Fire Campaign aims to help reduce the number of home fire-related injuries and fatalities. The Red Cross is partnering with municipalities, fire departments and community groups to help families be better prepared for and take important steps to prevent home fires.

Free Smoke Alarm Installations

The Red Cross and our community partners will be installing free smoke alarms in your neighborhood to help keep you and your family safe.

To schedule an appointment for a Home Fire Safety Visit to have FREE smoke alarms installed in your home, visit Every eight minutes, the Red Cross responds to a Home Fire.

People can take easy steps to increase their chances of surviving a fire.

  1. Make an escape plan.
  2. Make sure you have working smoke alarms in your home.
  3. Practice fire drills and then check your escape time.

We want to help you, your family and our community stay safe. Remember to test your smoke alarms monthly and practice your fire escape plan. For more information, visit

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the American Red Cross Home Fire Campaign pamphlet and I give them full credit for the information. Please call or email them for more information on the program.


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Project Health: A program at GMHC

Project Health: A Program at GMHC (Gay Men’s Health Crisis)

Are you 18 years or older, HIV positive and need help with housing and employment?

If you’re living with HIV and need help with housing and employment and/or medical care, Project Health may be for you.

Project Health provides:

*Individualized counseling, case management services and support groups.

*Connection to medical care and legal, employment, housing, social and other support services.

For more information, please contact Project Health at (212) 367-1115 or

GMHC: 307 38th Street, NYC  10018

GMHC Hotline: (800) 243-7692

Gay Men’s Health Crisis: End AIDS. Live Life.

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the Gay Men’s Health Crisis pamphlet and I give them full credit on the information. Please call them directly for more information.

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Free & Confidential HIV & Hepatitis C Testing: Alliance for Positive Change

Free & Confidential HIV & Hepatitis C Testing: Alliance for Positive Change

Monday-Friday 10:00am-4:00pm

Wednesday-Thursday 10:00am-7:00pm

Call (212) 645-0875 or walk to any of our testing centers. Free Metrocards are provided to those who test. This service is when available.

Keith Haring Center

315 East 104 Street, 1st Floor

New York, NY  10029

(212) 645-0875

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the Alliance for Positive Change pamphlet and I give them full credit for the information. Please call the above number for more information.

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You Deserve Affordable Healthcare: NY State of Health

You Deserve Affordable Healthcare: NY State of Health: The Official Health Plan Marketplace

NY State of Health provides you personalized help to find the right plan and financial assistance to lower your costs.

At NY State of Health, You’ll find:

*Many affordable and quality health plans

*Personalized help to pick your plan

*Help paying for the plan your choose

*The Essential Plan for lower income New Yorkers

Contact: The Alliance for Positive Change

Ms. Diamond Walters, Assistant Manager: Linkage to Insurance

Metro Central

(212) 645-0875, ext. 431 and Fax (212) 645-0705

Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the Alliance for Positive Change pamphlet and I give them full credit for the information. Please call Ms. Walters for more information on the program.

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