Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Happy Birthday, AIDS!

It's the 25th Anniversary of AIDS in America. AIDS would blow out some candles but it can't lift it's head off the pillow. Newsweek put AIDS' birthday on the cover. AIDS is so lucky. But the article they ran is pretty good, and the picture galleries they ran were great. Read the profiles in the Faces of HIV today photo gallery.

Meanwhile the CDC is about to announce they recommend everyone age 13 to 64 that visits a doctor receive an HIV test without counseling or permission. I agree, with qualifications. Fear kept me from getting an HIV test for many years. The only reason I went to see a doctor during that time was because I knew I wouldn't be tested against my will. I think if it had been mandatory, I might have avoided routine doctor visits. That kind of mentality will cause many people to avoid the doctor to avoid being tested and ultimately they will end up in the hospital, already very sick and immune compromised. This will be expensive and result in many people dying that could be helped. If HIV testing becomes mandatory, money must be spent on further educating people that HIV is not an automatic death sentence. It is treatable and survivable. AIDS is not. Thank goodness I faced my fear in time.

Here's a few fun facts, taken from the above mentioned CDC article. 500,00 Americans are dead from AIDS, out of 25 million worldwide. Upwards of one million Americans have HIV, and 1/4 of them are unaware of it.

Since were on the subject, I've added a couple of blogs to my list that I think are of note. Both of them were started at the time of their seroconversion. An interesting jump-off point, no? Check out Going Gentle. Also, Lee at less than 50 seems to be struggling with a lot of side effects from going on meds. If anyone has some advice/tips for him it would be nice to reach out.

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