Friday, February 14, 2014

After 27 Years at SF DPH, My Lesbian HIV Doc is Retiring

Sure feels like a trend, the retirement of highly qualified and experienced AIDS specialty doctors retiring. Last April, my primary care physician Dr. Fred Strauss ended his practice with the San Francisco Department of Public Health. I had been under his care since 1995 and he knew so much about medical history, without having to check my records, I had built up so much trust in him.

In November, longtime AIDS doctor Paul Bellman of New York City announced he was closing his practice, after decades of serving the gay male and HIV positive communities as both a physician and public policy advocate.

Now, the SF DPH doctor I've been seeing for the past nine or ten months is retiring. After twenty-seven years on the frontlines of the AIDS epidemic and after the plague era ended with the development of HIV drug cocktails, out lesbian Dr. Toby Dyner is calling it quits at the Castro-Mission Health Center of DPH.

I am in the process of gathering info about all the options available to me as a person with AIDS with Medicare and Medi-Cal public insurance. Don't know if I'll be remaining in the DPH system, most likely not for many reasons linked to its bureaucracy and leaders at the top of the agency at its 101 Grove Street headquarters, or transferring to the AIDS clinics at UCSF or Kaiser. If you have any advice about where to get quality AIDS and general healthcare in San Francisco, I'd like to hear what you have to say.

Here's Dr. Dyner's letter:

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