HIV News & Views, January 19, 2012 -
January 19, 2012
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Aless Piper Aless Piper: Getting Savvy About Social Media
"My theory is simple: There is no reason for anyone who wants to be involved not to be. ... There is no reason for us to not become more connected. Social media just seems hard. Once you use it, it's simple."

Justin B. Terry-Smith Justin B. Terry-Smith: Speaking to the Future Doctors of America (Video)
"I've been asked to speak at colleges, forums and other places, but this was really an inspiration, because these young people concentrate their studies and time on areas of medicine. They will be the professionals that will help the younger generation through illnesses and plagues like HIV."

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Lilly (From Earth) on "Will a Michigan Court Force an HIV-Positive Man to Take His Medication?"

"I understand the comments here concerned about one HIV patient's rights. I also think society has a right to protect itself against people like this patient for many reasons, not limited to the protection of people this patient can hurt and the economic costs of spreading the disease. ... Where's the concern and compassion for the people this guy sought to infect? I hope he is permanently sent to a mental hospital, but if his price of freedom is to try to insure he can't infect others, then it's not too high a price, IMO."

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 Vitamin D Supplements Offer Possible, But Still Unclear, Benefits in People Living With HIV
Two new studies on vitamin D supplementation suggest slight benefits in bone health for people living with HIV. However, neither provided enough evidence to recommend widespread vitamin D supplementation.

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Madly in Love With an HIV+ Guy -- But Strangely Alone
(A recent post from the "My Loved One Has HIV/AIDS" board)

"I'm starting a relationship with a positive guy, with whom I'm desperately in love. ... One month ago, when I told him that I could see that he needed some time to get used to the idea of getting involved, he sat down with me and between tears, told me he was positive. My first reaction, and I still think this way, was that it was completely OK, that I was madly in love with him and that HIV was not important and didn't make him who he is. ...

"I do love him ... [b]ut I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed handling this on my own, because I don't want to invade his privacy and tell any of my friends. ... I really wanted someone to talk to, because I don't know who to speak to. Even though we try to talk about it, he's still very angry and sad about contracting HIV and always gets bummed after. I want him to be the happiest man on earth, as I feel that I'm the happiest woman when I'm with him. How can I help him accept that it is OK and that I love him even better now that he's grown up so much because of HIV? "

 -- negativegf

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Norman Stone Jr. Maryland Bill Proposes to Make HIV Transmission "Attempt" a Felony; State Senator Speaks
A Maryland state senator has proposed a new bill that would make "knowingly transferring or attempting to transfer HIV to another individual" a felony in his state, increasing its maximum prison term from three years to 25 years. "Someone suggested it to us, and we thought it was a good idea," the senator told

 10 HIV/AIDS Stories to Watch in 2012
In this two-part preview of the year to come in HIV/AIDS, Candace Y.A. Montague gives us a taste of 10 developing stories that may have the largest impact on our community -- and on the way the rest of the world sees HIV -- in 2012.

 Balkan Countries Join Forces to Fight Devastating HIV/AIDS Stigma
Non-governmental organizations in the Balkans region are uniting to combat stubborn stigma surrounding HIV/AIDS in their communities. "We do not have any place to house people rejected by their families. They live in hospitals until they die," a Serbian HIV/AIDS advocate said.

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Visual AIDS: Art from HIV-Positive Artists

Image from the January 2012 Visual AIDS gallery Detail from:
"Baby Steffanelli [John S.]," 1985
Mark Morrisroe

Visit the January 2012 Visual AIDS Web Gallery to view our latest collection of art by HIV-positive artists! This month's gallery, entitled "If You Didn't Laugh, You'd Cry," is curated by Stuart Sandford.


Martin Luther King Jr. Phill Wilson: Fulfilling the Dream of Ending the HIV/AIDS Epidemic
As we paid tribute this week to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Phill Wilson of the Black AIDS Institute pondered two questions: "How does the dream to end the AIDS epidemic fit into Dr. King's dream? And where does HIV and AIDS fit into any contemporary conversations about the dreams, hopes, desires of the black community and of society?"

 HIV/AIDS Organization Spotlight: AIDS Coalition of Southwestern Pennsylvania
The AIDS Coalition of Southwestern Pennsylvania (ACSWP) provides a range of HIV support services in some of Pennsylvania's most rural areas. Think it's a challenge? You don't know the half of it. Doyin Desalu, ACSWP's executive director, explains.

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Bob Frascino, M.D. The "Winner" of Our Strangest But Truest Vote ("Best of Dr. Bob" Edition)
Hundreds of you voted on which of 10 finalists represented the zaniest HIV transmission question ever asked in our "Ask the Experts" forums. We've tallied up the votes, and we have an all-time winner -- or loser, depending on how you look at it!

 Disability and HIV: Eliminating Barriers to Sexual Health Care and Education
"Addressing HIV/AIDS among people with disabilities starts with recognizing that all people are sexual, regardless of whether they are living with disabilities," Heather Heldman and Hannah Slater write. In this article for Gay Men's Health Crisis, the two discuss some of the challenges faced by people with HIV who have any of a range of physical or mental disabilities.

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