RICHMOND HEIGHTS, Mo. — The Infectious Disease Clinic at SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital in Richmond Heights provides patients with HIV/AIDS life-saving medical care and suppresses the number of new cases through active pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) clinic.
December is National HIV/AIDS Awareness Month which brings awareness to the virus and tries to reduce the stigma and advocate to reduce the global impact of people contracting and living with HIV/AIDS.
Dr. Alex Lecasse is an infectious disease physician at St. Mary’s Hospital who says the clinic is part of the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Programs, which is administered by the U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services and provides a comprehensive system of HIV primary medical care, essential support services, and medications for low-income people living with HIV.
The program funds grants that provide care and treatment services to people with HIV to improve health outcomes and reduce HIV transmission among hard-to-reach populations.
St. Mary’s Hospital was selected for its ability to give care to patients in the St. Louis area. Dr. Lecasse says patients living with HIV can live a normal life with proper medication, and that as part of its clinic, they offer a dedicated HIV pharmacist and collect data on all patients to follow their progress over time.
Dr. Lecasse says the combination of the clinic, plus education, the support offered, the location of the hospital, and the customized medical care the clinic can offer to residents in St. Louis means patients should come in to be tested.
To learn more about the HIV/AIDS clinic at St. Mary’s Hospital, click here.
The SSM Health Medical Minute airs Wednesdays on News 11 at 7 p.m. and FOX 2 News at 9 p.m.