Positive Life NSW Blog

The HIV treatment landscape has changed

Posted by on in Advocacy and Policy

Positive Life NSW is committed to ending HIV transmission in NSW and we are hoping to make a major contribution to the work with our new CHOOSE treatment campaign.

The campaign highlights the advantages of being on HIV treatment and was launched on World AIDS Day 2013 by the NSW Health Minister Jillian Skinner MP. It asks people with HIV who aren't on treatment to think seriously about their choices and to start.

The treatments landscape has changed. Modern meds are safer, easier to take, and much more effective at suppressing the virus. There is also compelling evidence that treating HIV earlier can reduce the amount of HIV in body reservoirs, reduce the amount of chronic inflammation that HIV causes, and also prevent the onset of other serious chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, bone thinning and neurological impairment later in life. Someone on treatment with an undetectable viral load is also far less likely to pass on HIV to their HIV negative sexual partner/s. We also acknowledge people's right to choose to delay treatment and to not treat. Life with HIV is different for everyone.

The campaign contains themes like: Choose to forget what you think you know about HIV medications; Choose to accept that the drugs and your options have improved; Choose few side-effects. We've also released resources for people who want more information. The resources include a new booklet and DVD called Being Positive, with information about the HIV virus and its life-cycle, living with HIV, modern treatment options, and tips for living a healthier life.

Australians living well with HIV tell their stories and there are interviews with doctors and medical experts. The iPlan booklet has additionally been developed to help you understand and monitor some of the more important health issues that you may encounter. We believe that it is an invaluable tool to help you manage your HIV health care and other health information. Being Positive and iPlan can both be viewed and downloaded from the Positive Life website. If you would like a hard copy of the iPlan booklet, please contact Positive Life NSW.

And, remember that if you have questions about treatment you can always talk with your doctor. If you would like to talk with others living with HIV, Positive Life staff are here to talk with you either over the phone, by email or in person. To make a treatments enquiry please contact our Treatments Officer.

Have a happy and safe holiday season and all the best for 2014.

Also at http://gaynewsnetwork.com.au/viewpoint/the-treatment-landscape-has-changed-12541.html

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