Presentation on theme: "Amanda’s Story Facilitated by Dr Kathleen Allen-Ferdinand."— Presentation transcript:
Amanda’s Story Facilitated by Dr Kathleen Allen-Ferdinand
What can we learn from this story? HIV does NOT discriminate: you can get HIV at any age, and whether you have money or not and are good in school or not Amanda was 15 years old when she found out her status and had been taking risks since 13 years of age. She attended a private Christian Academy and was an A grade student
What can we learn from this story? When we do find out someone is HIV positive, we should treat them with respect. Amanda, like so many people, was accustomed to joking about HIV and treating people who were HIV positive like someone dirty, until she became infected herself. People who become infected, got infected by having unprotected sex with someone whose status they did not know, and who was HIV positive
What can we learn from this story? We need to learn everything we can about HIV/AIDS Amanda told her mother that she got “that thing”. She never paid attention in school when they spoke about HIV Immediately thought about death on hearing the diagnosis, though many HIV positive persons live full, and normal lives with the arrival of new drug therapies
What can we learn from this story? So how do we get infected with HIV? By having unprotected sex (Sex without a condom) with an infected person Sharing needles during drug use Transmitted from mother-to-child during pregnancy, birth & breastfeeding
What can we learn from this story? People living with HIV don’t LOOK any different In fact Amanda is a bit overweight, and looks “well” as we say in the Caribbean! Most people with HIV look just like you and I You can only know your HIV status by getting tested
What can we learn from this story? How do we know who is infected? Can’t tell by looking Have to be tested for HIV Amanda doesn’t know when she became infected or to whom she may have given HIV.
What can we learn from this story? Knowing your HIV status helps you to protect your loved ones Amanda has a baby boy. He has to be tested every 3 months until he is two years to see if she passed on the virus. If you can get pregnant, you can get HIV We offer HIV testing to all pregnant women, so that we can give medication to prevent the transmission to the baby
What can we learn from this story? HIV affects everyone in the family and Community Mother very emotional Says that many people shunned them and closed doors
What can we learn from this story? Having a good support structure is very important Family support essential Though others may have “closed doors”, Mother admitted that one door stayed open, so they were managing. Social worker and counselor present Team of health care providers to look after all the health and social needs
What can we learn from this story? “HIV is serious business!” “HIV changes LIVES!” Knowledge is power: knowing your status is always better than NOT knowing, because only then can you make informed choices to protect yourself and those you love.