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HIV AND STUDIES
Sep 29, 2006

I am HIV positive and my numbers still look ok after three years of having been dignose HIV positive and probably 13 years of having been actually positive.

Having heard about how ARVs are able to prolong one's life (normal life span in some cases), I feel that I have time to make positive contributions to the development of my country. I have an accounting backgroung and would want to take up a postgraduate course in development studies. It seems to me that scholarships are now only available to individuals who are HIV negative. In some countries like Australia, being HIV negative is a prerequisite for getting a visa. As experts, will you ever convince the people of this world that HIV positive people with the support of drugs are capable of being normal human beings? I now feel half human or like a prisoner because I cannot do what others are able to do despite being health and strong! Guide me please I have something to offer in this life and I am dying to do it.

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

HIV discrimination in any form needs to be confronted. There are a number of discriminatory laws and policies on the books in many countries. These need to be challenged at every opportunity, as they have no scientific or rational basis. HIV must never inhibit one's dreams or potential. I don't know where you are writing from, but I'd suggest you contact your local AIDS service organizations and get in touch with your local "HIV/AIDS legal services" group to find out exactly what your local laws actually state and what you can do to help change them. I see absolutely no reason why an HIV-positive accountant should be prohibited from attending graduate school or making a significant contribution to society. Fight for your rights!

Dr. Bob



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