Wednesday, December 11, 2013

US PEPFAR Fund helps Seniors explore HIV-AIDS issues

Today, members of CCRP Jamaica were able to learn more about HIV-AIDS at a Workshop sponsored by the United States President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR).

Mr Robert Piehel, Acting Public Affairs Officer of the US Embassy reminded participants that 'HIV-AIDS is not just a health issue - it's a human rights issue.' He said that if we removed the stigma associated with the disease, more persons would be encouraged to get tested.

Dr Jeremy Knight and Professor Brendon Bain showed the progress that was being made in the management of the disease, emphasising the importance of awareness. They said seniors who are influential in their various community and faith-based organisations could play an important role.

Dr Bain said we should explain that no one can catch HIV-AIDS by providing care to someone who is HIV infected - he has been doing so for 25 years!

The hero of the Workshop was Mrs Rosie Stone who noted that she had no idea that she was HIV infected until she became almost deathly ill. She said it was the support of family that pulled her through - we may add that it must have been her own courage and discipline to keep fighting and to devote much of her time to sharing information on the disease.

Dr Jean Small was the avid facilitator of the Workshop. Two additional US PEPFAR sponsored workshops, organised by CCRP Jamaica will be held in January 2014 for mature adults.

Sent from my BlackBerry® device from Digicel

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