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Meningitis: GMHC Takes Action

GMHC Salutes Two Members of Our Board of Directors For Their Leadership in Combating Meningitis


Demetre Daskalakis, MD and Frank Spinelli, MD, two GMHC Board members, were at the frontlines of the fight against the meningitis outbreak among gay men in NYC. They continue to administer free meningitis vaccinations once a month. To date, a few thousand vaccinations have been given at GMHC and other venues. Dr. Daskalakis coordinated the free vaccines with the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and continues to lead this effort. GMHC has partnered closely with the DOHMH and the Men’s Sexual Health Project on this program.

Vaccines are being given at the The David Geffen Center for HIV Prevention and Health Education, 224 West 29th Street (between 7th and 8th Avenues).   To receive a free vaccination, sign up in advance is required either in person at GMHC’s Main Office, 446 West 33rd Street - 7th floor (between 9th and 10th Avenues), by calling (212) 367-1273, or by e-mailing

"We identified two groups at highest risk of contracting meningitis: HIV-infected men who have sex with men, and any men, regardless of HIV status, who regularly have intimate contact with other men met through a website, digital application (App), or at a bar or party,” stated Jay Varma, MD, Deputy Commissioner for Disease Control, DOHMH.

Any gay man or MSM (man who has sex with men), at least 18 years of age, regardless of HIV status, who has had sex with a man he met through a website (Manhunt, Adam 4 Adam, etc.), digital application (GRINDR, SCRUFF, etc.), a bar, or a party since September 1, 2012 or who plan on having such contact in the future are recommended to be vaccinated.

GMHC has also provided vaccinations to transgender individuals and heterosexual women as well – vaccinations are open to all who may be exposed.

Demetre Daskalakis, MD MPH is the Medical Director of the HIV/AIDS Services at Mount Sinai Hospital and Founding Director of the Men's Sexual Health Project (M*SHP). Dr. Daskalakis commented, "I am grateful for the ongoing support provided by both the DOHMH and GMHC to make this vaccine available.”


Tuesday, July 22, 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm
Sign up in advance (required) at:
GMHC Main Office 446 West 33rd Street - 7th floor
(between 9th and 10th Avenues)
Or call (212) 367-1273 or e-mail
Vaccinations will be given at:
GMHC Center for HIV Prevention 224 West 29th Street - Ground Floor
(between 7th and 8th Avenues)

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Comments (2)

  • Which vaccine works against the new meningitis strain? What is the name of the vaccine?

    May 19, 2013 11:51 pm

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