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Porn production will continue despite closure of heath clinic, industry spokeswoman says

Aim_closed The San Fernando Valley-based porn industry will continue filming despite the shutdown Thursday of a health clinic that serves adult film performers, according to a porn industry spokeswoman.

Los Angeles County health officials served a cease and desist order on the Adult Industry Medical Healthcare Foundation in Sherman Oaks after state health officials denied the clinic's license application this week.

Diane Duke, executive director of the Free Speech Coalition, a Canoga Park-based porn trade association, said it was her understanding that the clinic will continue to maintain a key database used by porn producers to check whether performers have tested negative for HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases.

VIDEO: Watch The Times' interview with HIV-positive porn performer Derrick Burts

Duke said performers will be tested using "satellite blood draw services."

“Apparently the big difference is that the main AIM clinic cannot be utilized. Therefore, I do not believe that their will be any impairment of production activities,” said Duke.

State regulators said the AIM license application was denied due to “business-related issues” involving requirements for licensure.

For example, the clinic was required to have an agreement with a hospital they could transfer patients to as needed, and that agreement was not in place, according to Al Lundeen, a spokesman for the California Department of Public Health.

“AIM has been working on that,” Lundeen said, noting that AIM officials had been in contact with his office Thursday and provided additional information required for their license application to be approved.

“AIM is responding to the health authorities to get the information needed to complete its application,” he said.

Lundeen said it was unclear how soon AIM could submit a new application for approval.

“We’re open to continuing to work with them,” he said, but for AIM patients, “In the immediate future, they will need to seek services somewhere else.”

The nonprofit AIM clinic opened in 1998. County public health officials did not become aware that it was operating without a license until April. In May, they sent clinic officials a letter advising them that as a nonprofit, they could not operate under an affiliated physician’s license and needed to apply instead for a clinic license.

Lundeen said state officials were only alerted to the fact that the clinic was unlicensed shortly before AIM officials applied for a license June 7.

AIM's general manager Jennifer Miller, did not return phone calls from The Times on Thursday seeking comment.

She told AVN, which covers the adult video industry, that she had only been recently informed of the health department's decision and would be contacting authorities immediately to get the situation "straightened out." According to the AVN report, Miller said the denial of AIM’s application may have been on procedural rather than substantive grounds. She said that AIM would be issuing a statement late Thursday.

AIDS Healthcare Foundation President Michael Weinstein renewed his demand Thursday for all porn producers to require performers to use condoms, and for public health authorities to shut down productions that do not.

“While L.A. County finally doing something by closing AIM is a good thing, we’ll see if they have the backbone to shut down productions,” Weinstein said. “We can’t go back to ignoring and treating these performers as disposable.”

Steve Hirsch, founder and co-chairman of Studio- City-based Vivid Entertainment, has spoken out against efforts to require condom use in porn, and issued a statement Thursday saying he had faith in AIM and its testing system.

"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."

RELATED:

Porn industry health clinic shut down by L.A. County health officials

Clinic disputes Derrick Burts' claims that it failed to help him after he tested HIV-positive

Derrick Burts, HIV-positive porn actor: 'How many more times does this have to happen?'

-- Molly Hennessy-Fiske

Photo: Pedestrians are reflected in the front door of the Adult Industry Medical Healthcare Foundation that was shut down by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health officials in Sherman Oaks on Thursday on December 7, 2010.  The facility serves members of the porn industry. Credit: Genaro Molina/Los Angeles Times.

 
Comments () | Archives (12)

Why would a clinic that doesn't do any kind of acute care need to be affiliated with a hospital? If someone came in and needed immediate assistance all they would have to do is call 911 like anyone else.

This smells like Antonovich. Things that make no sense usually track back to him.

damn..i liked the music playing in the waiting room

Steve Hirsch should be put in jail for attempted murder, exposing all his performers to HIV.

The Federal Government has no Constitutional right to infringe on this industry. Lets get this out of controll bully Government out of our private lives once and for all.

This clinic and those of us around it have known for a long time that they've been a target of the ever jealous AIDS Healthcare Foundation and the zealots at Dept. of public Health.
Why would they leave themselves and preformers they serve open to this poor treatment?

Hed typo: "heath"

HAHAHA

this is why this industry need's too be abolished permantally this is the reason little girl's are kidnapped held hostage molested raped and murdered all because of porn so all in all it's no use too anyone bye

i think the reason we have porn is too debase sicko men and their fantasies the reason we even need porn is too keep men and some women employed the reason's out weigh the mean's a woman once told me i would never do porn then why encourage and do undue harm too your child it make's no sense i hope we settle this in the near future bye

Whew...I was worried because there's such a dearth of pornography on the internet.

It's probably a good thing this place got shut down. Although there doesn't seem to be any wrong doing by the AIM clinic, they should operate by public health standards. If anything, they should operate above public health standards due to the higher risk of infection compared to the general public.

A simple google search shows numerous HIV testing services in the greater Los Angeles area. So shutting down this clinic should not make it any harder for porn stars to get tested. The fact that this place caters exclusively to porn stars is fairly suspicious and I think that LA county health officials are totally justified in their decision.

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 offers the same Adult Industry Talent Package, which tests for HIV by PCR, Gonorrhea and Chlamydia. All you do is go online and order the test, create an account (where your results will be sent to once they are back from the lab) and print out the lab order. Then you can enter in your zip code and the website pulls up all the Lab Corp locations in your area. Just go to whatever Lab Corp collection site you choose and get your test done. Once your results are back from the lab (this usually takes between 2-3 business days), you will recieve an email notifying you that your results are in. Then you just log onto your account on JustGetTested.com and your tests are there for you to use at your discretion. It is completely, 100% confidential.

You can also use the coupon code LAB4NF to receive discounts on your order, so you can get the test for an even cheaper price! 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. Check it out!


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