Hep Free NYC Meeting Highlights | 09-14-2022

A Joint Hep B Coalition & Hep C Task Force Meeting

September 14th, 2022 (3 – 5 PM)
AttendanceSee below


Implementing a Primary Care Telemedicine Model of Hepatitis C Care and Treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic in Inpatient Substance Use Treatment Programs
Farah Riazi, Outreach Program Coordinator, REACH Program, Mount Sinaifarah.riazi@mountsinai.org
Jeffrey J. Weiss, PhD, MS, Director, REACH Program, Mount Sinai – jeffrey.weiss@mountsinai.org

  • View presentation here
    • There are high numbers of patients in detox/rehab programs who need to be treated for Hep C
    • Hep C telemedicine is a viable model for care and treatment and offers an opportunity to overcome barriers to access for people who use or inject drugs

Health-Related Quality of Life for Adults Living with Hepatitis B in the United States: A Qualitative Assessment 
Catherine Freeland, MPH, Associate Director of Public Health Research, Hepatitis B Foundation catherine.freeland@hepb.org

  • View presentation here
    • A diagnosis of Hep B can result in depression, anxiety, and self-isolation. Likewise, liver cancer fear can make people anxious and added stigma and discrimination make them feel inferior.
    • Hep B patients need to be actively involved in treatment and management decisions. Individuals should be appropriately informed about their conditions- what monitoring looks like, and what information they want to know.
    • View the article here for more details into the numbers.

Viral Hepatitis Elimination Implementation Update
Tristan McPherson, MD, Viral Hepatitis Program Medical Director, NYC Health Department tmcpherson@health.nyc.gov

  • View presentation here
    • Prioritization strategies based on importance and feasibility to inform timelines and goal setting
    • Find additional funding to support expanded strategy goals: internal and external through grants, but also the collaboration with partners to apply for funding
    • In the coming months, we will work with Hep Free NYC teams to schedule facilitation meetings on how key stakeholders and community members can contribute and commit to driving forward elimination strategies through practical, concrete next steps.
  • Plan to Eliminate Viral Hepatitis as a Major Public Health Threat in NYC by 2030

Policy and Advocacy
Meg Chappell, Program Manager, Empire Liver Foundationmegchappell@empireliverfoundation.org

  • View presentation here
    • In FY 23, NYC City Council funded 37 organizations to connect people at risk of Hep B and/or Hep C to prevention, testing, care, and treatment and to provide clinical and non-clinical education.
    • Advocacy Season Schedule. Mark your calendar!
      • Intro to City Council Funding for Viral Hep Training
        • November 9, 2022 (3 – 5 PM)
      • City Council Application: How to Apply Training
        • December 5, 2022 (3 – 5 PM)
        • January 11, 2023 (3 – 5 PM)
      • FY 2024 Application opens January 2023
      • Office Hours – January – February 2023
        • To assist organizations with completing their VHI application
      • VHI Training – Preparing Testimony & Calling Council Members
        • March TBD
    • Viral Hepatitis Advocacy Leadership Team:
    • For FY 24 – Raise Awareness! Call, email and meet with City Council members, particularly among the new City Council members and the Health Committee members, about the importance of the Viral Hepatitis Initiative.
  • Have you applied in the past and did not get funded? Are you interested in applying for funding? Email Meg! – megchappell@empireliverfoundation.org

Hep Free NYC Committee Updates


  1. Alejandra Poma, Program Manager, BMS Family Health Center, apoma@bmsfhc.org
  2. Alexandra Ramirez, Hepatitis Navigator Specialist, Community Health Action of Staten Island (CHASI), alexandra.ramirez@chasiny.org
  3. Alexis Brenes, Community Project Coordinator, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, abrenes@health.nyc.gov
  4. Alexis Irving, Perinatal Hep B Program Manager, State of Louisiana Health Department, alexis.irving@la.gov
  5. Amegnona (Thierry) Ekon, HIV Prevention Specialist, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, aekon@health.nyc.gov
  6. Andria Carter, Perinatal Hepatitis B Field Epidemiologist, Louisiana Department of Health, andria.carter@la.gov
  7. Angelica Bocour, Director of Viral Hepatitis Surveillance, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, abocour@health.nyc.gov
  8. Aprielle Wills, Perinatal Hepatitis C Coordinator, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, awills@health.nyc.gov
  9. Assita Belemkoabga, Associate Researcher, Mount Sinai Health System, assita.belemkoabga@mssm.edu
  10. Aura Blanco-Buitrago, Care Coordinator, Mount Sinai Health System, aura.blanco-buitrago@mssm.edu
  11. Ayele Kessouagni, CUNY Intern/Consultant, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, akessouagni@health.nyc.gov
  12. Beatrice Zovich, Public Health Program Manager, Hep B Foundation, beatrice.zovich@hepb.org
  13. Binghong Xu, RWJBH-Saint Barnabas Medical Center, xubinghong2011@gmail.com
  14. Brian Hennessey, Director of PrEP and Hepatitis C Initiatives, Housing Works, b.hennessey@housingworks.org
  15. Brooke Wyatt, Program Director, Mount Sinai Project Inspire, brooke.wyatt@mssm.edu
  16. Bruce Glazer, Account Executive, AbbVie, bruce.glazer@abbvie.com
  17. Bwambale Arafat, Public Health Scientist, Viral Hepatitis Community Partner, bwambalearafat@yahoo.com
  18. Carmen L Reyes Fontánez, PCP, Tiger Med Corporation, clreyesmd@gmail.com
  19. Carolina Maria Bolanos, Peer Navigator, Vocal-NY, caro@vocal-ny.org
  20. Catherine Freeland, Public Health Program Manager, Hep B Foundation, catherine.freeland@hepb.org
  21. Catherine Toyooka, Viral Hepatitis Community Partner, catherine.toyooka@acgov.org
  22. Christelle Onwu, Lead Advisor, African Communities, New York City Commission on Human Rights, conwu@cchr.nyc.gov
  23. Christina Hwang, Surveillance Analyst, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, chwang@health.nyc.gov
  24. Daniel Nam, VP of Policy, Global Liver Institute, dnam@globalliver.org
  25. Deanna Berlin, CBO Liaison, NYC DOHMH Sexual Health Clinics, dberlin@health.nyc.gov
  26. Derett Jepson, District Sales Manager, HCV NY, AbbVie, derett.jepson@abbvie.com
  27. Diana Diaz Munoz, Program Manager, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, ddiazmunoz@health.nyc.gov
  28. Dipan Ray, Director of Practice Experience, Touro College of Pharmacy, dipan.ray@touro.edu
  29. Erin Connors, Epidemiologist, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, ola3@cdc.gov
  30. Estefania Frias, Kings Specialty Pharmacy, estefania.f@kingsrx.com
  31. Farah Riazi, Patient Navigator, Mount Sinai Health System, farah.riazi@mountsinai.org
  32. Farma Pene, Community Projects Coordinator, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, fpene@health.nyc.gov
  33. Gail Brown, Director, COPE, gbrown.cope@gmail.com
  34. Ganiat Sarumi Disu, RN, Viral Hepatitis Community Partner, gsarumi@gmail.com
  35. Geraldine Phillip, Program Coordinator, South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS), geraldine@sacssny.org
  36. Gil Cerpa, Patient Navigator, Praxis Housing Initiatives, gacerpa@praxishousing.org
  37. Gina George, Epidemiologist Data Analyst, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, ggeorge3@health.nyc.gov
  38. Gloria Glenn, Program Assistant, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, gglenn@health.nyc.gov
  39. Halimatou Konte, Health Program Director, African Services Committee, halimatouk@africanservices.org
  40. Hasham Tariq, Ontario County Department of Public Health, hasham.tariq@ontariocountyny.gov
  41. Holly Wang, Patient Navigator, Korean Community Services, ywang@kcsny.org
  42. Ibrahima Sankare, Testing Assistant and Outreach, African Services Committee, ibrahimas@africanservices.org
  43. Ilan Weisberg, Chief of Gastroenterology, Mount Sinai Health System, ilansethweisberg@gmail.com
  44. Jackilyn Rivera, Hepatitis Program Assistant, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, jrivera20@health.nyc.gov
  45. Jagjit Kaur, United Sikhs, jagjit.kaur@unitedsikhs.org
  46. James Park, Physician, Northwell Health – Health System, jpark42@northwell.edu
  47. James Washington, Program Ambassador, East Harlem Community Partnership Program, hwashington2150@gmail.com
  48. Janelle Hockaday, Hep C Peer Navigator, Positive Health Project, j.hockaday@housingworks.org
  49. Jeff Weiss, Program Director, Mount Sinai – Respectful & Equitable Access to Comprehensive Healthcare (REACH) Program, jeffrey.weiss@mountsinai.org
  50. Jie-Lei Jenny Wong, Health Educator/ Patient Navigator, Seventh Avenue Family Health Center at NYU Langone, jielei.wong@nyulangone.org
  51. Jiehui (Joy) Zhu, Patient Navigator, Charles B. Wang Community Health Center, jizhu@cbwchc.org
  52. Jihae Jeon, Mount Sinai Health System, jihae.jeon@mountsinai.org
  53. Joelle Bodeta, Hepatitis Patient Navigator, NYC Health + Hospitals – Elmhurst Hospital Center, bodetaj@nychhc.org
  54. Jonathan Rodriguez, Hispanic Federation, jrodriguez@hispanicfederation.org
  55. Jose Ginel Rodriguez, MD, San Juan Bautista School of Medicine, ginel.rodriguez@sanjuanbautista.edu
  56. Joshua Lunior, NYC Health + Hospitals – Kings County Hospital Center, joshua.lunior@gmail.com
  57. Joy Cambe, Program Coordinator, Empire Liver Foundation, joycambe@empireliverfoundation.org
  58. Julie Lazaroff, Unit Chief, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, jlazarof@health.nyc.gov
  59. Justin Chen, Hep B Program Associate, Charles B. Wang Community Health Center, jchen@cbwchc.org
  60. Kalvin Shinrock, Health Education Specialist, Mount Sinai Health System, kalvin.shinrock@mountsinai.org
  61. Kareen Cardona Vicente, MD, Viral Hepatitis Community Partner, kareencardona8@gmail.com
  62. Karina Escamilla, Manager at Latino Religious Leadership Program, Latino Commission on AIDS, kescamilla@latinoaids.org
  63. Kayla Kelly, Hepatitis CoordinatorHepatitis Coordinator, Virginia Department of Health, kayla.kelly@vdh.virginia.gov
  64. Kelly Riordan, HEP C Case Manager, Sun River Health, kriordan@sunriver.org
  65. Kiara Lora, Director, HCV Treatment Network, Montefiore Medical Center, kialora@montefiore.org
  66. Lauren Meyers, MSL, Syneos Health, lauren.meyers@sh.vbivaccines.com
  67. Leo Fulwider, Patient Navigation Specialist, Arizona Department of Health Services, leo.fulwider@azdhs.gov
  68. Li Li, Public Health Advisor, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, lli6@health.nyc.gov
  69. Liz Tang, Outreach and Navigation Supervisor, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, ltang@health.nyc.gov
  70. Luis Camacho, Hep C Harm Reduction Specialist, Positive Health Project, l.camacho@housingworks.org
  71. Marie Bresnahan, Project INSPIRE Program Director, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, mbresnahan@health.nyc.gov
  72. Marta Giammarino, Sales Rep, Kings Specialty Pharmacy, marta.g@kingsrx.com
  73. Mary Chiang, Patient Navigator, Charles B. Wang Community Health Center, mchiang@cbwchc.org
  74. Medesa Garrett, HCV Program Coordinator, Sun River Health, mgarrett@sunriver.org
  75. Meg Chappell, Program Manager, Empire Liver Foundation, megchappell@empireliverfoundation.org
  76. Megan Plancher, Viral Hepatitis Program Assistant, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, mplancher@health.nyc.gov
  77. Minhee Lee, Program Coordinator, Korean Community Services, mlee@kcsny.org
  78. Miraf Kassew, Housing Works
  79. Mohan Ramaswarmy, Trustee, The Hindu Temple Society of North America, mohans49@yahoo.com
  80. Nadine Kela-Murphy, Clinical Practice Facilitation Program Manager, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, nkelamurphy@health.nyc.gov
  81. Natalie Taylor, Associate Director Public Health, Dynavax Technologies, ntaylor@dynavax.com
  82. Okhyun Ko, Manager, Korean Community Services, oko@kcsny.org
  83. Olivia Matalka, Student Intern, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, omatalka@health.nyc.gov
  84. Pedro Mateu-Gelabert, Associate Professor at CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy, CUNY School of Public Health, pedro.mateu-gelabert@sph.cuny.edu
  85. Peikwen Cheng, Yiviva, peikwen@yiviva.com
  86. Perla Romero, Lower East Side Harm Reduction Center, perla@alliance.nyc
  87. Preet Kukreja, Director of Population Health Initiatives, St. John’s Episcopal Hospital, pkukreja@ehs.org
  88. Rahel Yosief, Project Coordinator, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, ryosief@health.nyc.gov
  89. Rebecca Berger, Policy Analyst, NYU Langone Health System, rebecca.berger@nyulangone.org
  90. Rehan Mehmood, South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS), Director: Health Services, rehan@sacssny.org
  91. Sara Kim, Program Director, Korean Community Services, skim@kcsny.org
  92. Sarah Ahmed, Communications and Community Engagement Coordinator, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, sahmed10@health.nyc.gov
  93. Sarah Usher, HCV COORDINATOR, Sun River Health, susher@sunriver.org
  94. Shaili Gandhi, Hepatitis Program Assistant, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, sgandhi1@health.nyc.gov
  95. Shanaz Hosein, Program Manager, HITE, Greater New York Hospital Association, hite@gnyha.org
  96. Shashi Kapadia, Instructor in Medicine/ Infectious Diseases, NewYork-Presbyterian – Weill Cornell Medical Center, shk9078@med.cornell.edu
  97. Shellyann Vassell, Nurse Manager, Zucker Hillside Hospital, Northwell Health – Health System, svassell@northwell.edu
  98. Susan Olender, NewYork-Presbyterian – Columbia University Medical Center, so2045@cumc.columbia.edu
  99. Tammy Wenz, Viral Hepatitis Community Partner, tammy.wenz@nebraska.gov
  100. Tasnim Bhuiyan, The Hepatitis C Mentor and Support Group, Inc., tasnim.bhuiyan@icahn.mssm.edu
  101. Tristan McPherson, Viral Hepatitis Program Medical Director, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, tmcpherson@health.nyc.gov
  102. Umaima Khatun, Program Manager, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, ukhatun@health.nyc.gov
  103. Versalle Shelton, Clinical Practice Facilitator, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, vshelton@health.nyc.gov
  104. Violet Armstead, Viral Hepatitis Community Partner, armviolet@gmail.com
  105. Y-Uyen Le Nguyen, Hep B Medical Director, Charles B. Wang Community Health Center, ynguyen@cbwchc.org
  106. Yacaris De Jesus, Patient Navigator, NYC Health + Hospitals – Bellevue Hospital Center, yacaris.dejesus@nychhc.org
  107. Yanting (Kelly) Huang, Data Manager, Viral Hepatitis, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, yhuang5@health.nyc.gov
  108. Yi-Ling Tan, Program Manager, NYU Langone – NYU Hospitals Center, yi-ling.tan@nyulangone.org
  109. Yisha Johnson, Patient Navigator, BMS Family Health Center, yjohnson@bmsfhc.org

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