Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset's Babs Siperstein Proud Center Announces Addition of PrEP Counslor

Published Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Shayne Judge is an advocate and health educator with a demonstrated history of working in LGBTQ+ health with diverse populations. As PrEP Counselor, Ms. Judge offers personalized education and risk reduction counseling for patients and encourages individuals to advocate for themselves to get the care they deserve. She works to educate patients about PrEP, postexposure prophylaxis (PEP), and HIV prevention methods while connecting them with resources to assist with cost of medication. She also serves as support for PrEP patients by facilitating group and individual counseling.

PrEP is an anti-HIV medication used to prevent HIV-negative people from becoming HIV positive. PrEP is a single pill used daily that reduces an individual’s risk of HIV infection by 92 percent if taken properly and is meant to be used in combination with other prevention methods to provide greater protection.

The Babs Siperstein PROUD Center also offers Postexposure prophylaxis (PEP), an antiretroviral medication used after high-risk contact with an HIV-positive individual to prevent an individual from becoming infected. It is only effective within the first 72 hours of exposure.

“HIV remains one of the top public health concerns for the LGBTQIA community, and the addition of Shayne to the Babs Siperstein PROUD Center allows us to better serve our patients as we continue our HIV prevention efforts,” said Sameh Abdelaal, MD, Medical Director of the Babs Siperstein PROUD Center. “Shayne is a passionate advocate for the community and her previous experience in sexual health education makes her a strong asset to our team.”

Ms. Judge previously worked at Rutgers University H.O.P.E as a sexual health advocate and HIV tester/counselor and interned for the Masakhane Center, a sexuality education non-profit based in Newark. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in public health from Rutgers University and is currently pursuing her master’s degree in public health with a concentration in social and behavioral sciences at the Rutgers School of Public Health.

The Babs Siperstein PROUD Center, which opened in 2017, was the first in New Jersey to provide specialized primary care services for the LGBTQIA community. Services include hormone therapy and monitoring; HIV care; referrals for specialty services; health education and counseling.  The center, located at 128 Rehill Ave, Suite 1100, Somerville, which is open 5 days a week, also includes an advanced practice nurse and patient navigator.

To schedule an appointment with the Babs Siperstein PROUD Center, call 855-PROUD-FH or 908-243-8647. For more information visit: www.rwjbh.org/somersetproud.

About RWJUniversity Hospital Somerset

Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset is a nationally accredited, 341-bed hospital in Somerville, New Jersey, providing comprehensive emergency, medical/surgical and rehabilitative services.
The hospital is nationally recognized as a Magnet® hospital for nursing excellence and has earned an “A” Hospital Safety Score from Leapfrog - its highest patient safety rating.

The Steeplechase Cancer Center at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset has been honored with the prestigious Outstanding Achievement Award from the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. The hospital is also distinguished for its Joint Surgery Institute, receiving the Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval for total knee and total hip replacement surgery, and is designated as a Primary Stroke Center by the Joint Commission and the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services. Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset has been named a Center of Excellence in Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery by the Surgical Review Corporation. In addition, it has received the Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval for its acute myocardial infarction program.

Honored as a Leader in LGBT Healthcare Equality by the Human Rights Campaign, the hospital was the first in New Jersey to offer primary care services for the LGBTQIA community.

Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset also offers outpatient services at convenient locations in Central New Jersey, including physical therapy services in Bedminster, Bridgewater, Hillsborough, Princeton and Flemington and an urgent care center and a sleep disorders center in Hillsborough. In addition, the hospital’s affiliated physician practices provide care for families throughout its community.