News: Get Drunk in Philly, Fight AIDS

By Matthew Petrillo
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 8 | Posted Aug. 24, 2010

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A new citywide fundraiser is encouraging you to go out, get drunk and fight AIDS.

Philly’s AIDS infection rate is five times the national average, and so in an effort to raise awareness and combat this frightening trend, Bar AIDS Philadelphia will debut Thursday. Participating locations—the Bike Stop, Fergie’s Pub, Knock and Tavern on Camac, to name a few—will donate a percentage of their proceeds of this one-night-only fundraiser to four local nonprofit organizations, including ActionAIDS, the AIDS Law Project of Pennsylvania, Mazzoni Center and Philadelphia FIGHT.

Pennsylvania ranks No. 6 in the nation in the number of people reported to be infected with the disease, and the rate of HIV infections has been rapidly increasing in recent years, partly because AIDS no longer means a life sentence.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, HIV has increased 15 percent from 2004-2007 in 34 states.

“It has become more manageable to live with AIDS, and that has led more people to ignore the risks,” says Dr. Baligh Yehia, who studies infectious diseases at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. “Living with AIDS risks living with a weaker immune system and that’s prone to being infected with other diseases that make it debilitating to live.”

That’s true for Bradley D. Walter, a Scranton native and HIV patient. He says that his antiviral medication is on some days “debilitating,” although due to medical advances, such as Marinol, a synthetic pill form of medical marijuana, he’s been able to ease his medication’s side effects.

“The pills are the only medication I found that allows me to live a normal life,” he says, “and removes most of my side effects,” which include intense stomach pains, extreme hunger and nausea.

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Comments 1 - 8 of 8
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1. Anonymous said... on Aug 25, 2010 at 12:25PM

“Thanks for updating this-the print version reads, " the rate of HIV infections has been rapidly DEcreasing in recent years," which makes no sense.”

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2. MADavis said... on Aug 26, 2010 at 08:37AM

“Thanks PW for headlining and outing PLOPWAD - People Living Off People With AIDS Drunk. When will AIDS Service Organizations (ASO) get the point that alcohol leads to risky behavior and keeping us drunk and practicing risky behaviors will keep ASOs in business. SHAME on Bar AIDS and the PLOPWAD - PLOP WADs - living off of our backs rather than having are back and doing their job sober. As a person living with HIV for 22 years, in recovery from addictions and living with bipolar, facing the truth equals personal recovery. If only ASOs would get that point and stop promoting this route to HIV transmission!”

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3. MADavis said... on Aug 26, 2010 at 09:55AM

“Go to: and find innovation
for our recovery under statewide initiatives;
Behavioral Health Services for LGBTQI Individuals, a collaboration with PA Office of Mental Health Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) via Keystone Pride Recovery Initiative (KPRI) statewide workgroup, task forces, advocates, allies and peers.”

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4. Anonymous said... on Aug 26, 2010 at 10:27AM

“Just FYI, there are a few coffee shops participating for those who don't imbibe: Cafe Cret on the Parkway and Tutti Frutti, the new frozen yogurt place on Walnut @ 13th.”

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5. MADavis said... on Aug 27, 2010 at 11:42AM

“Thanks Anon for sharing alternative venues, hope event was successful despite expressing objection shared by others of campaign name and logo. Nonetheless, I was wrong using PLOP WADs adapted from ACT UP addressing big pharm profits, healthcare discrimination; events disguised as fund raisers such as a concert for Pediatric AIDS with meager 3% return; fraud, indictments and convictions of people stealing public/private funds from people living with HIV/AIDS or at-risk of transmission; and a million dollar Federal “gift” to faith-based entity not providing HIV/AIDS services as designated. I retract and apologize for wrongful characterization of local dedicated people for social change, under paid, hard working ASO workers, volunteers, people living with ___ and our allies. I hope it’s a teaching opportunity to address rampant addiction, mental illness and deaths by suicide in LGBTQI communities. Visit”

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6. MADavis said... on Aug 27, 2010 at 11:45AM

“For many of us facing these challenges its not safe being LGBTQI people in homo/transphobic services and hard to endure stigmas in bar centered queer culture and disability phobic services. Diverse stakeholders must seriously face these realities for the greater good of people living with co-occurring conditions and at-risk of HIV transmission. We can rally to dream, over come, save lives and address these concerns in our collective fight for civil rights.”

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7. Dialurdoctor said... on Jul 18, 2011 at 04:07AM

“Now it is very easy to contact with doctor.

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8. Dialurdoctor said... on Jul 18, 2011 at 04:07AM

“Now it is very easy to contact with doctor.


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