Speaking Frankly: The state of sexual health

A podcast from the California Prevention Training Center.

We know good sexual health doesn’t just happen—it’s created.

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Latest Episode: Season 2

Season 2, Episode 8: All Things Anal Cancer with Dr. Rosalyn Plotzker

September 9, 2021

We speak with Dr. Rosalyn Plotzker about her work with UCSF’s ANCRE Center, the world’s first clinic devoted to anal cancer prevention. Anal cancer incidence is on the rise despite it being associated with the highly preventable (and extremely common!) human papillomavirus. Roz takes us through her work with the clinic, anal cancer screening and risk factors, and debunks many of the stereotypes and stigmas surrounding anal cancer and its causes.

Listen and learn how you, too, can play a role in normalizing cancer prevention and better anal health!

Want to chat with Roz directly? Email her: Rosalyn.Plotzker@ucsf.edu

Download the transcript of Dr. Plotzker’s episode

Past Episodes: Season 2

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If you work in sexual health, you have probably had the experience of becoming the “sexpert” for your friends and family.

In this special episode we have gathered some (but by no means all!) of the questions Dr. Rosalyn Plotzker has received from her various circles to try and demystify at least some of these aspects of sexual health.

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We continue our conversation with Dr. Paul Nash, Associate Professor in Gerontology at USC.

In Part 2 of this discussion about ageism, host Duran Rutledge and Paul dive into the harmful stigma surrounding sex and aging, particularly for people at the intersections of various identities and life experiences.

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In this episode we talk with Dr. Paul Nash, Associate Professor in Gerontology at USC. His research spans over a decade and focuses on ageism, discrimination, sexual health, and the built environment. He partners with several non-profit organizations on his research into HIV and aging as well as ageism and intergenerational communication.

Paul currently serves as a Commissioner on the Los Angeles County Commission on HIV, and he consults with the World Health Organization on ageism. He is active in teaching and recently published the book, Critical Questions for Ageing Societies.

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We talk with anti-racist activist, Dante King. He’s worked with organizations like the San Francisco Metropolitan transportation agency and the San Francisco Department of Public Health to cultivate environments that are anti-racist and inclusive.

He discusses how capitalism reinforces racism, the creation of anti-blackness through policy, and the systems and structures that have led to white supremacist ideology.

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“Sex positivity” has become quite a buzzy phrase in sexual health and advocacy spaces in the last decade. But what does that mean in practice? Today we talk with JaDawn Wright, Deputy Director of the Pacific Aids Education training Center (PAETC), about just that. JaDawn provides capacity-building support to healthcare professionals. She says sex-positive environments can lead to better health outcomes and can help us each feel more seen “as our authentic selves.”

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Ana Delgado, CNM, is a Clinical Professor in the UC San Francisco Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, San Francisco General Hospital Division. Ana acts as the Assistant Director of Inpatient Obstetrics and Co-Director for Anti-Racism, Equity, Inclusion and Structural Change. Ana talks with us about racial inequities in healthcare, how structural racism permeates every facet of life, and why “race is always an issue for folks who are racialized.”

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Dr. Aisha Mays is a Family Physician who focuses on Adolescent Medicine. She is the Founder and Medical Director of the Dream Youth Clinic of Roots Community Health Center, in Oakland, California — a youth-led, youth-engaged adolescent clinic co-located within Oakland’s two youth shelters. Dr. Mays’ work centers on adolescent reproductive health, reproductive justice for highly vulnerable youth, and the health risks associated with childhood commercial sexual exploitation. Her research focuses on exploring reproductive justice barriers and supporting sexual health for youth.

On this episode, we talk with Dr. Mays about her important work.

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Dana Cropper, previously Director of Education at HealthHIV, recently stepped into the role of Director of the California Prevention Training Center, after Alice Gandelman’s retirement.

In this debut episode of Speaking Frankly season two, we talk with Dana about her new position, why Oprah and Sojourner Truth are two of her heroes, and why she thinks to reduce stigma, we must each engage in deep and ongoing self-reflection “about how we navigate through the world”.

Past Episodes: Season 1

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On Jan 21, 2021, the FDA approved Cabenuva, the first once-monthly injectable HIV treatment for adults. Dr. Kelly Johnson, a fellow in infectious diseases and sexually transmitted infections at the University of California, San Francisco, and a physician at San Francisco General Hospital’s Ward 86, explains the implications of this new treatment and how it affects the 1.2 million Americans living with HIV.

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Dr. Monica Gandhi is an infectious disease physician and professor of medicine at UCSF, and the Medical Director of the Ward 86 clinic focused on HIV. She has become a trusted expert on COVID-19.

She talks with us about the vaccines already being used in the US, and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine that was submitted to the FDA for Emergency Use Authorization.

She explains the implications for the one-dose J & J vaccine and when we may finally get back to a little bit of normalcy.

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Dr. Ina Park talks about her new book, Strange Bedfellows, in which she uses science, humor and storytelling to share the untold stories of many common sexually transmitted infections.

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Congenital syphilis is up 900% in California since 2012. UC San Francisco’s Dr. Rosalyn Plotzker speaks with us about CS prevention and treatment and about the complex issues contributing to the spike, like systemic racism.

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Dr. George Rutherford, Professor of Epidemiology at UC San Francisco, talks with us about COVID-19, the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines and why anti-microbial resistance is the next public health threat.

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We continue our discussion with Lidia Carlton, Director of Community Education at Planned Parenthood Pasadena and San Gabriel Valley. In this episode she explains the social-emotional component of sex ed, and why sex ed is an ideal place to teach about race and ableism.

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Lidia Carlton, Director of Community Education at Planned Parenthood Pasadena and San Gabriel Valley, speaks with us about the California Healthy Youth Act, which mandates more robust and inclusive sex ed in California. She tells us about the positive results it’s yielded, but why some parents are still concerned about the new curriculum.

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Wanda Jackson, DISTC Trainer/Technical Assistance Specialist, has more than 30 years’ experience in the field of disease investigation and contact tracing. In this episode, she gives us a detailed look at the contact tracing process and explains why compassion, patience, and empathy are so valuable as we face this public health crisis.

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