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Dec-11-2010 21:28printcomments

California Officials Close LA Porn Industry's Clinic

For its part, AIM has defended the care it provides to adult performers; stating that claims are “not truthful and are self-serving."

Adult actress Lexi Belle
Adult actress Lexi Belle hosting red carpet interviews at Belladonna and Kimberly Kane's "Winter Wonderland" benefit, which raised thousands of dollars for the embattled Adult Industry Medical Health Care Foundation. Courtesy: laist.com

(SACRAMENTO) - Los Angeles County officials closed a health clinic that serves the adult film industry there, shuttering the Adult Industry Medical Health Care Foundation two days after the state Department of Public Health (DPH) said it will not license the facility as a community clinic.

Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, acting on behalf of DPH, served AIM with the cease-and-desist order. The clinic posted on its website a message that it would be open for business Dec. 10.

“This closure is a temporary situation, due to the completion of our clinic license, which we are rapidly moving forward on completion,” the statement said. After providing services without the appropriate license for more than a decade, AIM had applied for the correct state licensure in June, after being notified it needed to do so.

AIM’s application was rejected for incompleteness, DPH said, noting the clinic, among other deficiencies, lacked a transfer agreement with a local hospital to provide in-patient care of its clients when necessary. The health center, which had only operated under a physician’s license, provided testing for sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV, among adult film actors.

Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) President Michael Weinstein Dec. 8 called on regulatory authorities to force the clinic’s closure.

“No other businesses -- restaurants with failing grades, for example -- have the right or the chutzpah to defy county health officials by remaining open and potentially endangering the public’s health. LA County officials should get out to Sherman Oaks and shut AIM down now,” Weinstein said.

AIM, which opened its doors in 1998, was notified of the DPH decision to reject its application Dec. 7, the same day HIV-positive porn actor Derrick Burts criticized the clinic and called for mandatory condom use in the adult film industry.

Cast as Cameron Reid in straight films and Derek Chambers in gay porn, 24-year-old Burts said he had waited more than a month on AIM, after he tested HIV-positive, for the clinic to refer him to a doctor’s care and release his medical record.

Burts, formerly known only as Patient Zeta, said he first appeared in an adult film in June, after responding to an ad on the Internet-based classifieds site Craigslist. After months of appearing in straight and gay productions, Burts said he learned Oct. 9 he was HIV-positive.

The news came from a routine serum test at AIM’s headquarters in Sherman Oaks, Calif. The results triggered a virtual shutdown of California's adult film production industry.

Other than performing in movies, Burts said he recently only had sex with his girlfriend, also an adult film star. She has tested HIV-negative, he said.

Burts said AIM staff told him he likely contracted the virus on the job, from a "known positive" actor.

For its part, AIM has defended the care it provides to adult performers. The facility’s attorneys, Karen Tynan and Jeffrey Douglas, said in a statement the claims made by Burts are “not truthful and are self-serving."

They referred to Burts, in the statement, as "Patient Zeta" amid concerns over patient confidentiality. In September, AIM said, “Patient Zeta acquired the [HIV] virus through private, personal activity.” Burts identified himself as Patient Zeta earlier this week to the Los Angeles Times.

As for the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, AIM's lawyers said the organization has a history of “aggressive and hostile actions” against their client.

“The most distressing aspect of this situation is that Patient Zeta is simply being manipulated for AHF's own purposes and in furtherance of their agenda," they wrote.

Adult film impresario Steven Hirsch, founder and co-chairman of Vivid Entertainment in Studio City, Calif., said in a statement that he trusts AIM’s policies on HIV testing.

"We have been in contact with AIM and believe that the current situation is temporary and will be quickly remedied," Hirsch said.

"There are other alternatives that we can utilize in the meantime and will do so. We believe the current system of testing works. Our productions will proceed as scheduled." Information on AIM is available on the clinic's website, at aim-med.org; details on AHF are on the Internet at aidshealth.org.




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Brittany December 15, 2010 1:14 pm (Pacific time)

In the wake of news that Adult Industry Medical Health Foundation (AIM), in Sherman Oaks, CA has been temporarily closed, many adult entertainers find themselves without affordable, reliable and confidential blood test options. Although AIM was the lab testing leader in the adult entertainment industry, many don’t know that you can order the exact same lab test online for the same ((or cheaper)) price from anywhere in the country. JustGetTested.com, a leading online lab test site, offers blood test profile specifically designed for the adult industry. The blood test profile, or Adult Entertainment Industry Talent Test Profile, on JustGetTested.com tests for HIV by PCR, Gonorrhea and Chlamydia and retails at $130.00 (You can save money on this test by using coupon code LAB4NF). In addition to providing recommended STD testing, JustGetTested.com offers unparalleled confidentiality allowing only the person ordering the test access to results. It is important for EVERYONE to always practice safe sex and a HUGE part of that is getting tested! JustGetTested.com offers all STD tests online, including the one required for members of the adult entertainment industry. You can also use the coupon code LAB4NF to receive discounts on your order, so you can get the Adult Entertainment Industry Talent Test Profile for an even cheaper price than AIM was offering! Go to www.JustGetTested.com and check it out!


Luke Easter December 12, 2010 3:13 pm (Pacific time)

Want to shut down something? Street gangs, racism, tea party, using food stamps on alcohol, tobacco, firearms... But health care for the porn industry? Are there not many more important things to shut down in L.A.? America?


Dnice December 12, 2010 1:13 am (Pacific time)

Why was Darren James exposed right aftr his + test results and this guy took so long to reveal himself. Smells fishy !


andrewhalton December 11, 2010 11:01 pm (Pacific time)

You know what You guys should stop complaining because, one the health care we have now isnt as good as it was supposed to be. also the law has just been signed so give it some time. so if u want to say u have the right to choose tell that to ur congress men or state official. If you do not have insurance and need one You can find full medical coverage at the lowest price check http://ow.ly/3akSX .If you have health insurance and do not care about cost just be happy it and trust me you are not going to loose anything!

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