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work issue,s
May 21, 2002

dear dr boyle,im doing fine on viracept and combivar. im going to get on family leave from my job. i will only use it as needed. like going to my regular dr visits etc. do you think i can put on the form that hiv is no longer adeath sentence but a chronic disease like dibetes? and do you think i should reveal my condition with american airlines medical after they said that all family leave conditions are kept confidential? i was asking them but not telling them whati had. so they said that many people are on family leave. i then asked them to mention a few and they several including hiv. im so scared that my coworkers or my managers will find out. i don,t trust this company at all. what do you think?

Response from Dr. Boyle

I agree that in many people HIV is a chronic disease that can be controlled by medications just like hypertension or diabetes. So long as you are not in a position where you can transmit HIV to another person, I do not think it is necessary for you to disclose your HIV+ status to your employer, especially if your CD4+ T cell count is reasonable and your viral load is undetectable (so that you're not at risk for getting repetitively ill, which might affect your employers planning). Good luck with your job!



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