The Massachusetts Alliance of Portuguese Speakers (MAPS) invites community members to a special World AIDS Day commemoration event that will take place on December 1st, from 6 to 9 PM, at the organization’s Cambridge office, located at 1046 Cambridge Street.
Under the slogan #BePrEPared, the organization plans to highlight the latest prevention methods available to people at very high risk for HIV, including Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, or “PrEP”, as it is commonly known.
“We’ve seen great advancements in recent years in regard to HIV,” said Milena Mello, Diretor of the MAPS HIV/ STI Services. “Not only has great progress been made on the treatment side, allowing HIV positive people who live a healthy lifestyle and have access to medication to live long, healthy lives, but also on the prevention side, with medication like PrEP, which, when taken consistently, can stop HIV from taking hold and spreading, especially when combined with traditional prevention methods like condoms,” she added.
Besides putting together the World AIDS Day event in Cambridge, the MAPS Community Health workers will also be hosting free health clinics on December 1st in the organization’s Lowell, Dorchester, Somerville, Framingham, and Brighton offices, where clients will be able to, in a safe and confidential environment, get tested for HIV, other STI and Hepatitis C.
Throughout the year, MAPS hosts free health clinics on a weekly basis out of these offices, and plans can be made to provide tests and information to groups or individuals outside of MAPS’ offices. The program is funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), MA Dept. of Public Health, and the Boston Public Health Commission.