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Well Care for HIV-Positive Children
Choosing Doctors and Tips for Keeping Kids Well


Your Healthcare Team

The effects of HIV infection are not only physical, but also financial, social, and emotional for you and your family. You will need the support of a healthcare team including doctors, nurses, social workers, nutritionists, and child development specialists. Some communities have case managers. A case manager, usually a nurse or social worker, can help you find the services you need. Sometimes the case manager will work with your doctor in a clinic or hospital. Other times, the case manager will be in a community agency.

Choosing a Healthcare Provider

One of the important decisions you will make will be choosing a doctor and a program that will provide the best care for your child. Try to find a doctor who has taken care of other children with HIV or AIDS. Usually one of the following kinds of doctors will be responsible for coordinating your child's care:

The doctor you choose should be someone:

You may need the services of many doctors and specialists, such as:

Once you have chosen a doctor and a treatment center, you can best help your child by keeping communication lines open between yourself and your healthcare team.

Remember: The course of the HIV/AIDS virus is unpredictable, and your child's condition may become worse despite treatment. If you feel that this is happening, share your concern with your doctor or someone you trust on the healthcare team. Although the infection cannot yet be cured, your healthcare team will do everything possible to keep your child well. You have the right to the best available medical care and treatment for your child.

Well Child Care

Like all children, your child needs to have a pediatrician, or family doctor, who will:

It is important for your pediatrician to know that your child has HIV infection so that he or she can give your child good care.

Daily Care

A child with HIV or AIDS is not able to fight infections well, so we want to keep the child from getting infections in the first place. These are some things you can do to help keep your child well. Older children need to be taught to do these things for themselves:

This article was provided by National Pediatric and Family HIV Resource Center. You can find this article online by typing this address into your Web browser:

General Disclaimer: is designed for educational purposes only and is not engaged in rendering medical advice or professional services. The information provided through should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or a disease. It is not a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, consult your health care provider.