Category Archives: Health

Some states say it’s time to open

covidThe state of Georgia has earned widespread criticism, after Gov. Brian Kemp said businesses like gyms, hair salons, and barber shops could open this past Friday, April 24 with theaters and restaurants to open tomorrow on April 27.

I’d like to use this post to encourage a little social activism on your part. If you think Gov. Kemp’s actions are reckless then speak up, regardless of where you live. Call the Georgia State Govenor’s Mansion to arrange a tour like Professa Cross shares below.

Click  on the image to enlarge if it is difficult to read – it’s worth your time.

If you are unsure when a specific state will be lifting their “stay-at-home” orders this site has a listing of all 50 states and the District of Columbia, here.  I’ve included a  list of states that say they will lift ‘stay-at-home’ requests this week. For some states with low infection rates localized in a defined area that may make sense, but the data shows that isn’t the case for all the states listed below.

Alabama – Thursday, April 30
6,000+ cases / 164 deaths – considered widespread, details here.

Alaska – Opened April 21
300+ cases / 9 deaths – considered defined, details here.

Arizona – Thursday, April 30
6,000+ cases / 273 deaths – considered widespread, details here.

Colorado – Monday, April 27 (Denver stay-at-home remains)
6,000+ cases / 670+ deaths – considered widespread, details here.

Florida – Thursday, April 30
30,000+ cases / 1,000+ deaths – considered widespread, details here.

Idaho – Thursday, April 30
1,870+ cases / 50+ deaths – considered widespread, details here.

Indiana – Friday, May 1
14,000+ cases / 78+ deaths – undetermined, details here.

Louisiana – Friday, May 1
26,500+ cases / 1,600+ deaths – considered widespread, details here.

Mississippi – Monday, April 27
5,700+ cases / 220+ deaths – considered widespread, details here.

Montana – Monday, April 27
440+ cases / 14 deaths – considered defined, details here.

Nevada – Thursday, April 30
4,500+ cases / 200+ deaths – considered widespread, details here.

Ohio – Friday, May 1
15,500+ cases / 700+ deaths – considered defined, details here.

Tennessee – Thursday, April 30
9,000+ cases / 175+ deaths – considered defined, details here.

Texas – Thursday, April 30
23,700+ cases / 600+ deaths – considered widespread, details here.

SOURCE for case counts and deaths

FDA eases blood donation policy targeting gay men (sort of)

Thursday April 2nd the U.S. government (sort of) eased restrictions that previously forbid gay men and several other groups from making blood donations.  The FDA’s policy change is not absolute, meaning the guidance for male donors who would have been deferred for having sex with another man has changed the recommended deferral period from 12 months to 3 months. For sexually active gay men, which describes every gay man I know – this change although welcome still falls short. You can read the details about the new policy which aims to allow tens of thousands more Americans to give blood here.

The change in policy is due to canceled blood drives, that have decimated donations to the American Red Cross and other nonprofits that provide most of the blood supply in the country.

For those of you who are not sexually active gay men, consider contacting your local American Red Cross. To learn more and or to schedule a blood donation at Boston’s American Red Cross donation center call 1-800-RED CROSS or go online to schedule a time to donate, here.

What to do this week: March 16-22

coronavirus, covid-19, gay humorWhen phrases like “social distancing” and “flattening the curve” become a part of our vernacular and are trending on social media, you know that something is up.

Many meetings, events and programs last week made last minute decisions to cancel so I’m going to take a hiatus from publishing events this week and suggest a prolonged “Netflix-n-Chill” approach while we ride out COVID-19.

Below you’ll find an easy to follow guide on how to wash your hands since that seems to be among the best ways to prevent the spread. For more information about symptoms related to Coronavirus, visit this CDC site.

Five Steps to Wash Your Hands the Right Way
  1. Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
  2. Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
  3. Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
  4. Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
  5. Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.

Coronavirus rant: Calm the f*ck down

Calm DownI’m veering from my usual topic and string of man candy posts for a momentary rant about our nation’s  response to COVID-19.  Guidance from the White House has been erratic at best, and I attribute the President’s failure to lead as the main reason for so much misinformation and general hysteria. After all Trump has gone from accusing Democrats and media of fear mongering and exaggerating, even suggesting this was a hoax and mortality rates shared by the World Health Organization as not that serious to implementing travel bans and declaring a national emergency. 

Due in large part to Trump’s failure to lead, there has been  a run on items like hand sanitizers and some are hoarding items like paper towels and toilet paper. Take 1-minute (well really 1:20) to listen to Judy Woodruff who closed the Friday night News Hour with a far more sane response than I’ve heard come from our President and a far more compassionate response that I hope will appeal to your better senses. Perhaps the White House can take cues from Judy and others in the media who have provided similar messages to help bring the nation together.

Fenway Health PrEP@Home study needs you

truvada, sexual healthFenway Health is recruiting people for a new medical study called PrEP@Home that involves testing a mobile app for men on PrEP to evaluate the effectiveness while minimizing the need for in-person follow up at clinics.

FENWAY HEALTH STUDY – EARN UP TO $240

Eligible participants should be between the ages of 18 – 49, HIV negative, assigned male at birth and interested in taking PrEP. Eligible participants will be eligible to receive up to $240 for completing all study procedures.

Interested? Call 617.927.6448 or click here to learn more: PrEP@Home.

Boston free summer fitness series

Boston Moves, Summer fitness programsStarting earlier this month on June 4th, Boston Parks launched their annual summer fitness series. Due to past success and interest the city is expanding the program this year and will offer 30 classes per week through September 29th.

Free fitness classes take place in the morning and evenings and include a variety of options like yoga, zumba and bootcamp. All classes take place outdoors in Boston’s parks around the city. The full calendar of activities can be found here: bphc.org/summerfitness.

You can follow what is happening and get updates by following @HealthyBoston.

Medical group forms to help connect LGBTQ community with wellness providers

Handsome, hunk, hairy, furry, doctorFew things are more important than taking care of your health and for that reason I touch upon the topic occasionally. A few years back I wrote the post, Many LGBT patients feel alienated by their health providersA few years after my post I shared the US News & World Report article, How to Come Out to Your Doctor as an LGBT Patient, which explained why this is important: the type of preventative care you should receive – esp if you are sexually active; questions you may want to ask your doctor; and most importantly for those who are not out to their health care providers – how to start the conversation.

So when I was recently contacted by Lighthouse, a network of LGBTQ affirming health and wellness providers, I knew I’d want to share this. According to the release I received, Lighthouse is a group of NYC-based providers who have devoted our careers to caring for LGBTQ+ patients. They are currently up and running in New York City and are expanding rapidly to serve the LGBTQ+ community nationwide.

For more information you can check out their blog at blog.lighthouse.lgbt or visit their website at www.lighthouse.lgbt.