NewYork-Presbyterian Queens Announces the Expansion of Routine Bloodborne Virus (BBV) Screening for HIV, HBV and HCV Testing aimed at Potentially Reducing the Mortality Rate for those at risk of these Infections

All Eligible NewYork-Presbyterian/Queens Emergency Department and Ambulatory Care Center Patients to Receive Access to HBV, HCV and HIV Screening and Patient Navigation Services

Aug 8, 2016

Queens, New York

NewYork-Presbyterian Queens (NYP Queens) is announcing a new initiative, HIV, HBV and HCV Testing Model in an Urban Hospital Setting, to test for  hepatitis B virus (HBV), hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) so people living with any of the diseases can be aware of their status and linked to care. The program, which is in its pilot year and will run through 2016, will offer testing for HBV, HCV and HIV to all eligible adult NYP/Queens Emergency Department (ED) and Ambulatory Care Center (ACC) patients. In order for patients to be eligible, they must be 21 years or older. If a patient tests positive, they will be linked to a primary care physician or the appropriate medical specialists for follow-up care. 

Ari Bunim, M.D., the Director of the NYP Queens Liver Center, who is the co-principal investigator of the project says, “NewYork-Presbyterian/Queens and its doctors are at the forefront of care for HIV, HBV and HCV patients. This program allows our hospital to play a role in helping to reduce the morbidity and mortality rate for individuals infected with these viruses.”

Ming-der Chang, PhD, senior director of NYP Queens Community Health Initiatives and co-principal investigator of the project adds, “This project will connect underserved populations to the care they need. HIV, HBV and HCV testing is being implemented in our ED and ACC work flow and patient’s EMRs will reflect if a patient was asked to receive this testing. If a patient tests positive, they will be linked to care by our patient navigator.” 

Program details

The medical community has long understood the importance of screening for HBV, HCV and HIV, but low screening rates for these diseases remain a critical issue. According to the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, this problem is particularly acute in Queens County, where there is a high prevalence of HBV infection. Additionally, according to the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, the region also reports high incidents of HBV and HCV related liver diseases.

As part of the HIV, HBV and HCV Testing Model in an Urban Hospital Setting program, NYP/Queens ED and ACC will offer every patient who comes through the doors screenings for HBV, HCV and HIV. By implementing this best practice as a routine part of ED and ACC visits, the hospital aims to reach up to 10,000 patients this year.  In order to make this a routine part of ED and ACC visits, EMRs will require physicians and physician assistants to note screening was offered. Any patient who tests positive for one of the aforementioned viruses will receive follow-up from the hospital’s patient navigator, who is tasked with connecting them with the appropriate care. The patient navigator will follow up with all patients, whether they test negative or positive, and seek to remove any barriers to care for the patient during the continuum of care. 

According to the New York State Department of Health, HBV is the most common serious liver infection in the world. HBV spreads through contact with blood and bodily fluids of an infected person; commonly the infected individual is not aware they carry this virus. While most individuals are able to fight off an HBV infection and clear the virus from their blood, 5-10% of adults, 30-50% of children, and 90% of infants will develop chronic infection which can lead to liver failure, cirrhosis (scarring) or cancer of the liver.

HCV infects about 25,000 people each year with most developing chronic infection and liver disease. The majority of individuals infected with HCV are not aware they carry this chronic infection but are at risk of developing chronic liver diseases such as cirrhosis and cancer of the liver.

There are many positive outcomes associated with HIV, HBV and HCV Testing Model in an Urban Hospital Setting. NYP/Queens will develop a sustainable workflow for screening for HIV, HBV, and HCV and to link those in the Flushing community who are HBV, HCV or HIV positive to appropriate care.  The program will also generate best practices that will be shared throughout the greater New York region and the rest of the country through meetings, conferences, peer reviewed articles, and other presentations.


NewYork-Presbyterian/Queens, located in Flushing, New York, is a community teaching hospital affiliated with Weill Cornell Medicine that serves Queens and metro New York residents. The 535-bed tertiary care facility provides services in 14 clinical departments and numerous subspecialties, including 15,000 surgeries and 4,000 infant deliveries each year. With its network of affiliated primary and multispecialty care physician practices and community-based health centers, the hospital provides approximately 162,000 ambulatory care visits and 124,000 emergency service visits annually. For more information, visit


NewYork-Presbyterian is one of the nation’s most comprehensive healthcare delivery networks, focused on providing innovative and compassionate care to patients in the New York metropolitan area and throughout the globe. In collaboration with two renowned medical school partners, Weill Cornell Medicine and Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons, NewYork-Presbyterian is consistently recognized as a leader in medical education, groundbreaking research and clinical innovation.

NewYork-Presbyterian has four major divisions: NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital is ranked #1 in the New York metropolitan area by U.S. News and World Report and repeatedly named to the magazine’s Honor Roll of best hospitals in the nation; NewYork-Presbyterian Regional Hospital Network is comprised of leading hospitals in and around New York and delivers high-quality care to patients throughout the region; NewYork-Presbyterian Physician Services, which includes the NewYork-Presbyterian Medical Groups, connects medical experts with patients in their communities; and NewYork-Presbyterian Community and Population Health features the hospital’s ambulatory care network sites and operations, community care initiatives and healthcare quality programs, including NewYork Quality Care, established by NewYork-Presbyterian, Weill Cornell and Columbia.

NewYork-Presbyterian is one of the largest healthcare providers in the U.S. Each year, nearly 29,000 NewYork-Presbyterian professionals deliver exceptional care to more than 2 million patients.

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Media Contact:

Jenna Bouffard 212-843-9379