Breaking Down the Barriers in Access to Care


Alliance for Positive Health AFPH Logo

Top Image © Pexles/Anna Shvets

The Alliance for Positive Health (AFPH) was founded almost 40 years ago as the AIDS Council of Northeastern New York. We are a community-based organization with five offices reaching the marginalized and underserved in 17 counties of Northeastern New York.

AFPH strives to reduce health disparities for high-risk individuals by providing access to health care and support services, including housing assistance and social services. As a provider of HIV prevention, AFPH has experience working with individuals whose lives are complicated by stigma, addiction, poverty, homelessness, incarceration, and/or mental illness—those most at risk for HIV, sexually transmitted diseases, hepatitis C, opioid addiction, and suicide.
Despite our success in reducing HIV infections, there is an epidemic of sexually transmitted infections throughout New York.

One consequence of the COVID-19 epidemic is that some long-time survivors of HIV have foregone their medications and are no longer virally suppressed, putting themselves and others at increased risk. Our priority is to ensure that all who are infected know their status and are linked to early care and treatment, helping maintain their care and prevent new cases.

AFPH’s testing van and outreach target the most impacted communities, reaching those not willing or able to access medical clinics. Through HIV, STIs, and hepatitis C testing, we connect people to the treatment they need.

Our experience with harm reduction and syringe exchange as an HIV prevention tool provides expertise in addressing the opioid epidemic. The harm reduction approach meets individuals where they are and helps them move towards acceptance of and connection to appropriate treatment. Our staff is trained to manage overdose medication and support the community in making this more accessible.

As a leader of care coordination services for those living with HIV, we have always assessed our clients for a full range of what are now called “social determinants of health.” From the beginning of the HIV epidemic, access to insurance, housing, transportation, childcare, good nutrition, and social supports have been recognized as critical to positive health outcomes. Our expertise with the HIV population now extends to individuals with other chronic illnesses, most often those with mental illness or substance use conditions. We take pride in connecting these individuals to the services they need and providers willing to work with them despite the challenges and stigma
they face.

AFPH is committed to meeting NY State’s End the Epidemic goals. Though much progress has been made in reducing the incidence of HIV and AIDS in New York, the epidemic is NOT OVER. Youth, particularly young men having sex with men and those sharing needles, are at continued high risk. But one in five new cases of HIV infection is someone over the age of 50. There are also many long-term survivors living with HIV who, as a consequence of COVID-19, are disconnected from the sense of community, which once bound them together.

Due to a shortage of mental health services, AFPH is attempting to build a Bridge to Care program that will ensure clients needing immediate intervention receive short-term counseling while awaiting acceptance into a program.

collage of clients of alliance for positive health
© Courtesy of Alliance for Positive Health

Alliance For Positive Health Contact Information

Connect to to learn more about the services we provide to improve the health of our clients and community and the creation of our Bridge to Care counseling.

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The mission of the Alliance for Positive Health is to reduce the impact and incidence of HIV/AIDS and other serious medical and social conditions.


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