Whether you’ve just been diagnosed with HIV, or you’ve been living with HIV for longer, there’s times we all need support and a chat. Even though living with HIV these days is simpler than it’s ever been, you might still have questions about managing your health, doctors, appointments, the health system, or simply finding some friends to share experiences with. The rate at which HIV treatments have expanded along with new options means staying up to date can be confusing and time consuming.
Sometimes it’s about finding the right services, or it could be about other things like finding a place to live, getting work, or finding support to tell a partner about HIV. Having a friendly chat with someone in your shoes who understands and can help unpack your options in a non-judgmental, confidential way is a great start to feel positive about your health and future.
Positive Life has a number of ‘Peer Navigators’, all who live with HIV themselves. Our Peer navigators also come from different walks of life and from around the world. They are experienced in managing the challenges and opportunities HIV brings. Peer Navigators start with your goals and how you want to live your life. A Peer Navigator can brainstorm options with you and support you to navigate complex health and government systems. It can be as simple as a one-off chat, or perhaps you might want a peer navigator to support you for a bit longer.
If you’ve been newly diagnosed, it can feel overwhelming to understand the information, appointments, blood tests or even work out what your doctor is saying to you. How will life change now you have HIV? The good news is that it can be the start of a healthier, more engaged, and active life. Your confidence dealing with HIV can grow when you are connected with a Peer Navigator.
For others who have lived with HIV longer, having a conversation with a Peer Navigator about how things are going can take a load off your mind. Doctors’ appointments are often short and don’t leave enough time to go over what a doctor might be saying and meaning in any detail. For older people living with HIV, with several different health conditions, a Peer Navigator can be someone who helps you keep track of medications and appointments and can brainstorm your choices or work through some of the things raised with your doctor.
Calling Positive Life and asking to speak with a Peer Navigator is easy. It’s also free, confidential and non-judgemental.We understand the challenges and obstacles that can make it difficult to manage our health, because like you, we also live with HIV.
A Peer Navigator will work with you to set some goals, and learn about what’s important to you. With their knowledge of health structures, the HIV sector and what it’s like to live with HIV, Peer Navigators know what’s available. Together, we can discuss what options and services you need and how to get them. We can explore the decisions you’re comfortable with and make sure you’re getting what you really want from your healthcare providers. On a more personal note, together we can work out how you might want to tell someone you’ve met that you’re living with HIV (disclose) or communicate the right message to reassure your partner, friend or family member. Whether you need a one-off brainstorm or you need someone to support you on an ongoing basis, a Peer Navigator can give you a hand.
If you live with HIV in any part of NSW, get in touch on (02) 8357 8386, 1800 245 677 or firstname.lastname@example.org and ask for a Peer Navigator. We’re looking forward to connecting with you!