36% increase in HIV diagnoses over last five years in Northern Ireland

The figures recently released by Northern Ireland’s Public Health Agency show some worrying figures. I sincerely hope that the Health Minister, Simon Hamilton MLA, and the Health Committee of the Northern Ireland Assembly take them to heart and work to … Continue reading 36% increase in HIV diagnoses over last five years in Northern Ireland

Unlicensed Cambodian doctor jailed for 25 years for spreading HIV

After Cambodian authorities detected an epidemic of HIV when they started testing a community in the Battambbang province, in the remote north-west of the country. They found more than 270 cases including people in their 80s and one who was aged 2 years. Today an unlicensed medical practitioner was convicted of murder, and sentenced to 25 years in prison for spreading HIV. The provincical court judge, Yich Na Chheavy told a packed courtroom, “The court found Yem Chrin guilty of operating health treatment without license, injecting people with syringes that spread HIV and torturing peopled to die.” News: Reuters Continue reading Unlicensed Cambodian doctor jailed for 25 years for spreading HIV

#WADirl launched by Irish Health Minister

The Irish Minister for Health, Leo Varadkar TD last week launched the first ever five-day national World AIDS Day campaign in Ireland. This campaign is developed by NGOs and statutory bodies across Ireland in partnership with the HSE Sexual Health & Crisis Pregnancy Programme.

The focus of the Irish campaign is Solidarity with all people living with HIV, both those who know they are living with HIV, and those who don’t. The campaign has been running since 27 November 2015 and will run until World AIDS Day on the 1 December 2015, and aims to raise awareness about the many issues that present themselves for people living with HIV and those at risk of contracting HIV.

The key messages of HIV Visibility, HIV Stigma, HIV Support and HIV Knowledge are being promoted through a social media campaign on Facebook and Twitter asking people to show their solidarity with people who are living with HIV. They can do so by wearing a red ribbon, starting a conversation about HIV with friends and family, challenging HIV stigma and discrimination if they encounter it, or learning more about safer sex and getting tested for HIV. The hashtag for the campaign is #WADirl. Continue reading “#WADirl launched by Irish Health Minister”

A bit of a bounce last week…

It was results time last Tuesday morning when I visited the Royal Victoria Hospital’s GUM clinic for possibly the last time. Since diagnosis my CD4 count has been rather on the low side, on diagnosis, it was 100, and has dropped to 80, before climbing up to above 200. Last Tuesday morning I got told that it was over three hundred! As I said on Twitter: #bounce VL <70. CD4 = 330 and 20%. #bestever couldn't have done w/o help from @BelfastTrust @belfastwriter and @PositiveLife_NI — John [HIVBlogger] (@HIVBlogger) March 25, 2014 The Viral Load count was a little bit higher than … Continue reading A bit of a bounce last week…

HIV healthcare workers – response from NI Department

Hearing the news that the UK Department of Health is relaxing the current restrictions on healthcare workers living with HIV working in the NHS, I contacted the Minister of Health, Social Services and Public Safety, the DUP’s Edwin Poots MLA, asking what plans he had for introducing this here in Northern Ireland. Whilst I was having my complementary therapy at Positive Life, a response arrived in my inbox. I was informed of the statement made by a DHSSSPS spokesman earlier today, The Department is aware of the position taken by the Department of Health in England in relation to HIV … Continue reading HIV healthcare workers – response from NI Department