November 25, 2003
Social acceptance of HIV-positive status "in a given time and place" also can affect disclosure, the Times reports. Jennifer Kates, director of HIV/AIDS policy at the Kaiser Family Foundation, said that, for example, there is a "greater openness about sexuality and HIV" in Brazil, where the government operates a widespread HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention program, according to the Times. She added, "Brazil is a real success story." In the United States, public health experts say that individual counseling and educational campaigns encouraging disclosure are "more effective than punitive laws" in preventing HIV transmission; currently, 35 states have laws that include criminal penalties for failing to disclose HIV-positive status, the Times reports. Klitzman said, "To say everyone should disclose [their HIV status] all the time is difficult, since some people may be rejected, kicked out of their homes, beaten up or worse as a result of it. So we health professionals need to encourage those individuals who choose not to disclose to consider carefully all of the consequences of their decision" (Markel, New York Times, 11/25).
Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, search the archives, or sign up for email delivery at www.kaisernetwork.org/dailyreports/hiv. The Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of the Kaiser Family Foundation, by The Advisory Board Company. © 2003 by The Advisory Board Company and Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.