Coalition on Positive Health Empowerment

Our Story

Quality health for all.

Founded and staffed by people who live with and understand the many challenging facets a life with a disability can present. We are dedicated to seeking individual opportunities to change lives and ensure life driving purpose through wellness, education and advocacy.

COPE’s vision is to improve access to quality care for under-served populations by providing education and support; reducing the fear, stigma, and discrimination associated with viral hepatitis, HIV, and other infectious and chronic health conditions.

We believe access to quality health care is a human right.

We embrace the WHO definition of health as “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

We aspire to create a Center of Excellence in patient education and peer healthcare support in New York City that can be replicated worldwide.

We deliver:

  • Community health education on how to prevent illness, get diagnosed, access care and treatment, and manage viral hepatitis, HIV, and other physical and psychological chronic health conditions
  • Screening for hepatitis C and HIV
  • Linkage to healthcare services
  • Peer community health worker support services for continuous engagement in health care
  • Psychosocial support to build patient resilience
  • Education and skills-building for healthful lifestyles and greater well-being
  • Advocacy for sound regional, state, national, and global public health policy and research to improve individual and community health

The truth is that we have a healthcare system that is not inclusive to all. Gaps in care are most likely to leave behind those who have been undervalued, disenfranchised, and oppressed due to their race, gender, sexual orientation, age, education, income level, mental health, and substance disorders. This has created a class of people who have unequal access to health information and care, and therefore lack power in their own health and well-being.

Reaching those our society deems as unreachable and facilitating their access to health care is COPE’s passion.

Our mission is to bridge the gaps in chronic healthcare management for people not getting the care and prevention services they need. We advocate for greater health and social justice at every level – working with individuals in need of information, skills building, and support, joining with community partners to create effective systems of care, and taking our seat at the table to shape policies that impact chronic disease prevention and care.

By fostering community, equity, and individual and community empowerment, we are working to achieve greater well-being for all.

Today, COPE provides services throughout the five boroughs of NYC and the wider metropolitan area, as well as advocacy and capacity building with non-profits across New York State and the US.

A Better Patient Care Model

COPE, the Coalition on Positive Health Empowerment, was founded in 2010. We are a coalition of community peers, medical, and non-medical support providers who have come together to improve the patient-care model.

COPE was initially established to provide care and support for people that are Hepatitis C positive, but we have since expanded towards improving the health and well-being of people left out of the care system.

Today we provide patient education, support, and advocacy for people living with HCV, HIV, and other co-occurring chronic conditions, including diabetes, hypertension, frailty, cancer, depression, and anxiety.

No matter the health challenge, with COPE’s model of fostering patient knowledge, health literacy, self-agency, and trust in medical care and support systems, no one has to be left behind.