The Desert Aids Project is a total joke, they fraudulantly overbilled me $700, lied repeatedly and were extremely unprofessional on all levels. I highly recommend avoiding and not supporting these people.
DO not call for intake, give them all of your private info such as proof of residency and diagnosis and then allow them to deny medical treatment to you. This is Their MO. Notice that they have you sign a form allowing them to seek grants on your behalf such as Ryan White and others. They must bank all of these funds because they clearly don't use them for patient treatment. Stand up to the lies by DAP and demand treatment. They are just a bunch of money grabbers and thieves. Not one of the Board Members has any contact info online. Why? If you have insurance go elsewhere. Do not donate to this PROFIT organization. Email me with your story of denial. I will be your advocate. Unclesam704@yahoo.com. They claim to assist the needy and the uninsured.....only when their hand is out for money.
I saw Dr. Hawthorne until 12/13. I was scheduled to see him in01/14 but cap called and cancelled the appointment claiming that Dr. Hawthorne was sick. I was told that someone would call back and reschedule. Never happened. In February Antonio Huerta was able to get me another appointment which cap called that morning and cancelled saying again that Dr. Hawthorne was sick and that someone would call back with a new appointment. Never happened. When I was contacted in December I specifically asked if my PSA test had come back okay as their had been indications from previous tests that it was high. I was told very Rudy that my lab results had been reviewed and everything was fine. Turns out that this was not at all the case. I tried from April until August to get another appointment. Finally my partner contacted Sheri Saenz who said she would have someone call back that day with a new appointment- again that never happened. A couple of days later some woman called back with an appointment and told me to go to labcorp for a blood draw. I went to ladcorp as instructed only to find out that there was no orders. So i go to the clinic to let them know this where upon I was talked down to and treated like dirt by the receptionist- Yvette Romero. A few days later I get a call from Dr. Steven Schiebel who said that my PSA test had come back very high and he was sending an urgent referral to urology. He told me that so done from dap'would be contacting me..5 days later I get a call from the urologist scheduling my appointment. 2 weeks later I get a call from cap telling me to call the urologist to schedule my appointment. This was considered urgent by Dr. Schiebel but his staff took 2 weeks? This is but one of many issues people face with this organization. They are rude, arrogant, poorly trained and poorly managed. Donate your money to AMFAR or APLA- somewhere that actually cares. STAY AWAY FROM THIS PLACE!
If the Desert AIDS Project is so wonderful than why are my neighbors selling Crystal Meth and Guns at the Vista Sunrise Special Needs Apartment Complex that DAP owns? You folks evicted me when I complained about the non-stop Meth dealing . I'm Gay with AIDS and you didn't help me. The eviction cost me my credit and chance for cheaper housing. Wouldn't it have been better to move me or just arrest the people dealing Meth. Gordy Sorenson has been dealing Meth and Teen prostitutes since he moved in 5 years ago. Doing my American civic duty as a Gay Man in Palm Springs California proved unhealthy.
DAP is a joke! They need to be investigated in a big way, especially that DAMN revivals bull , now a regular retail furniture outlet. They have too many stores they have no idea how to run them they are supposed to be a support for people with HIV and AIDS which is a total joke, they rake in so much cash and I would like to know where it is going...The DAP is ridiculous the staff are totally incompetent, they think that they personally give out those damn stater bros cards and hold them hostage if you open your mouth and tell them how screwed up they are ...they are as bad as that useless mayor we have who the hell is over these idiots...
My experience with the Desert AIDS Project has been a nightmare. I lived at the same address in Perris, CA for more than eleven months. It is part of DAP's service area but was told I did NOT establish residency by an abrasive employee, RAY ROBERTSON, that I had not because my state issued id didn't have my then-current address. He said I could establish residency by showing him either a lease, a utility bill or having a notarized statement from the woman I was renting from. I did NOT have a lease. EVERYTHING was in her name. I asked her repeatedly to give me a notarized statement to no end. She told me more than ten times that we would get the notarized statement. It never happened. I wasn't in a position to get a new state issued id because the closest bus stop was at least three miles down an extremely steep hill. I am an amputee with a poorly-filing fake leg. I was physically unable to walk the distance required to get to the bus stop. At some point the roommate started making death threats against a third roommate. There wasn't a chance in hell that I'd get the notarized statement. I told Ray Robertson all that was happening and he refused to budge, telling me he was only following the rules established by the Ryan White Planning Council for San Bernardino and Riverside Counties. He hung up on me at least seven times in less than thirty minutes after literally repeating the same line an equal number of times. I asked him if he was reading a script, if he could think outside the box and got no response. He was quite rude. The request to become a client started LAST April to no avail. In August 2012 I fled Perris with the third roommate, ending up at a motel in Moreno Valley, also part of DAP's service area. We were there for twenty-one days. Ray Robertson refused to even consider the receipts as proof of having lived in the service area. for twenty-one of the thirty days I would need to become a client of DAP. He then said my only alternative was to go to Roy's Desert SOS Resource Center, stay there thirty days, establishing residency in the process, enabling me to get housing assistance through either Roy's parent organizations Jewish Family Services' Desert Vista Housing Program or DAP's Housing Department. My nightmare was only beginning. Desert Vista Housing staff members said that I needed a referral from DAP before they could begin to process my application. More than a five weeks went bye and I still had not heard from ANYONE at DAP. I only was seen originally because I took it upon myself to attempt to attend the Ryan White Planning Council meeting that was held at DAP. Why would I use the word "attempt" instead of using "attended'? I was flat out told by a staff member at DAP, also at the meeting, that I had one of two choices: I could either testify as to my lack of assistance OR get the help that I needed. I said that six months had already gone bye from when I first attempted to get the HELP that I NEED and that another day wouldn't matter because the problem with my id may be an issue preventing other people from receiving assistance from DAP. There was a possibly bigger issue. I was again told to either testify or get the HELP that I NEED. It was already clear that staff at DAP did not want anyone from the planning council to hear anything negative about the lack of services available to me. I met with Kevin Larke that afternoon. I told him that he needed to make a referral to Desert Vista Housing after first complaining that it should not have taken more than six months to become a client. I asked him to bring the matter to the attention of somebody, anyone, in management to which he replied that it was not his department, a typical non-acknowledgment of my plight. He then took offense to my telling him that I NEEDED a referral to Desert Vista Housing, yelling that I shouldn't tell him how to do his job. I didn't tell him how to do his job. Maybe I should have because ten months later I REMAIN HOMELESS. Kevin Larke has since left the employ of DAP and remains unaccountable for his caustic disposition and vindictive behavior. I use the word "vindictive" because Kevin Larke NEVER actually made a referral to the Vista Sunrise Apartments until MARCH THIRD. I asked for a referral in November 2012. His stated reason was that he was waiting for me to sign a behavior agreement that because I dared to raise my voice when I caught him in a lie. Of course, other staff members wouldn't admit he lied, telling me that there was a misunderstanding. The lie was that he initially told me that Antonio (last name unknown) would be my housing case manager, that he was doing Antonio a favor. I later found out that Antonio is NOT a housing case manager and called Kevin a liar, which he is. As far as his doing me a favor, NO, he was SUPPOSED to be doing HIS JOB, not me a favor.I got the referral I needed for Desert Vista HOusing to NO AVAIL. By the time I received the referral my time at Roy's Desert SOS was over. I was lost in the proverbial shuffle. Yat, I am supposed to be content, not raise my voice, not call a liar a liar and a dog a dog. In any event, HE NEVER DID DO HIS JOB. I REMAIN HOMELESS. Kevin Larke never once emailed me or sent via the US Mail Service anything as far as a referral or anything else. I checked my spam folder multiple times to no avail. He apparently lied about that too. Meanwhile, he's gone AND I REMAIN HOMELESS. The behavioral agreement that I signed places me at a distinct disadvantage. I was coerced into signing an agreement under threat of losing the minimal services that I do receive, $40 in food vouchers, which prohibits my speaking to any staff at DAP other than my "case manager" Zayda Weldon. I can't even find out an accurate date as to when the Ryan White Planning Council meets at DAP again because I'm not "allowed" to email, phone or otherwise contact the staff person who would know if they changed a meeting date. This is important because Zayda Weldon finally gave me a meeting date I believe in April, I was supposed to see my prosthestist that day but figured that my testimony was more important. There were at least seven emails sent back and forth between Zayda Weldon and I the day before the meeting with my lamenting that had I been allowed to contact somebody other than Zayda Weldon at DAP that I could have attended a meeting months earlier and NOT had to reschedule my appointment. Zayda Weldon nor I noticed that the meeting date was actually the say of my receiving written notice of the meeting. My not knowing what day it is could be explained by my being HOMELESS. Why Zayda doesn't know what the date is remains a mystery. Dare I suggest that she is out of her element, unskilled, unqualified to do her job? I don't know. I do know that I was since given another date that the Ryan White Planning Council meets at DAP, went to DAP's offices only to learn the meeting had been rescheduled. Zayda Weldon KNOWS I want to attend and yet makes no effort to keep me informed. She did give me a web address for the planning council but that was not helpful in the least as the web site is NOT updated to reflect meeting dates and times being changed. Even if it were updated daily that would involve my having to go to a library to find out what changes were made. I have other things to do than to go to a library every day to look at a web site that isn't always accurate. More recently Zayda Weldon called me to say that I would need to get a TB test performed and read before I could keep my dental appointment at DAP. I already had the test done and read and told Zayda Weldon the same. She again said I needed the test done, that there wasn't proof of the test being read although there was proof of the test being performed. What especially irks me about the situation is that Zayda Weldon waited until a Thursday before a holiday weekend to inform me of the lack of proof of the test being read. That meant that I would need to reschedule my dental appointment. There wasn't time to get the test read in time for the appointment the day after the holiday. On the day of the scheduled appointment, AFTER i had already cancelled the appointment based on fraudulent information provided by Zayda Weldon, I discovered that, IN FACT, there WAS PROOF of the tb test being performed AND READ. How Zayda Weldon didn't have access to the same information remains a mystery, as well. She didn't seem to COMPREHEND that she SHOULD HAVE NOTIFIED ME OF THE NON-PROBLEM SOONER so that I wouldn't have had to reschedule the appointment. I was already upset because I waited TEN MONTHS TO EVEN GET THE APPOINTMENT. I asked Zayda Weldon for a referral at least four times before the referral was even made to begin with. The day before the rescheduled appointment I called Zayda Weldon and left a message on her voice mail that I might need to reschedule the appointment because my monthly disability pass had not shown up and I didn't have the cash to get there due to extra, unanticipated expenses that were out of my control. I left the same message on her voice mail the following day. When I later saw her in the office, Zayda Weldon had no knowledge of what I was talking about, indicating that she had not yet listened to her voice mail from the PREVIOUS day. I remain HOMELESS and feel that I am being sabotaged by a vindictive staff who fear budget cuts after knowledge of their poor treatment of clients becomes publicly known.
The DAP rests on it's laurels. Over the last 10 years, the quality of their services have slid precipitously. Granted, budget constraints have hit hard. However, staff routinely, are not up on the latest programs and funding issues impacting wrap around HIV care. They have abandoned their relationship with what was supposed to be a susbidized NP housing complex for AIDS / HIV + community off their parking lot, which now regularly denies POZ folks on income. The quality of their medical care is questionable... clients complain the doctor and staff will not spend time explaining their labs Their staff no nothing about new insurance options for those with some income who have lost their insurance. You either have had to hit the bottom to get baseline help or stand on your head. The Board appears to have never undergone a self-evaluation (a good np should do this at least every 5 years and is filled with glam folks who like to feel good) and I do not know of a single meaningful independent service audit / survey of clients. They are out of touch, often antagonistic. They have no effective ongoing communication strategy to engage their clients. It's random, often last minute and poor. Fellow clients have indicated they fear if they complain to loudly, they will be targeted for cut backs in services. People use DAP now for free labs, baseline care, and Food subsidy cards and gas cards. That's largely it for the vast majority.
I recently was asked to leave the organization after I questeioned a form letter requesting re-certification for Ryan White Funding. I explained in a not so gentle manner that all documentation had been submitted a few weeks prior. I also pointed out that other than give referrals the agency has a hands off attitude in regard to all benefits for the most part. I also visited the clinic and was told by the dr :he did not like taking on new patients that I was lucky he was seeing me" This is just one example of many issues the community as a whole has for DAP. With the recent total loss of food voucher's, it seems the agency has outlived its usefulness. The management does no outreach, has ONE AA/substance abuse meeting per week, no peer advocacy (Law suit problem) As a man who has had HIV since 1985, I no longer use DAP, they have no services to offer me. I disagreed with a voice mail, asked to talk to someone about my grievances with no avail. I later received a certified letter telling me I was no longer welcome.
Review from Guidestar