What is World AIDS Day?
As we approach December 1st, International World Aids Day we remember what the whole movement was about. 30 years ago World AIDS Day was the first of it kind, a global health day. A day which presented the opportunity for persons, organisations, institutions and countries alike to unite in the fight against HIV and AIDS.
Now you might ask, why is it so important that this day became the first of it kind? Despite being discovered in 1984, HIV and AIDS has been one of the most destructive pandemics in the world claiming over 35 millions lives within these thirty years. Even though within recent times scientific advances has greatly improved HIV prevention and treatment that persons with HIV and their partners can live long and healthy lives, thousands of persons are diagnosed with HIV every year. Therefore, World AIDS Day stands as a reminder to all stakeholders that continued funding, messaging, increased awareness and education to end discrimination is needed to achieve the goal of the fight against HIV.
This Year’s Focus For World AIDS Day.
The theme for World AIDS Day 2018 is “Know your Status”, with many subtopics such as:
- Testing Saves Lives – People can only start treatment if they know their status.
- Knowing Earlier, Start Earlier – The earlier you know your status the earlier you can start medication which means a better outcome
- Staying HIV Free – Using protection and PrEP
- Looking after loved ones – Undetectable means Untransmittable. (U=U)
- Stopping Transmissions to babies – By knowing her status, a mother can access a range of options to ensure her baby is born/remains healthy and HIV free.
- Staying Alive and Well – Know your status for other STIs and noncommunicable diseases.
Finally the last subtopic is the one Equals is paying special attention to “Claiming Your Right to Health”, which means by deciding to know your status you are claiming the government’s duty to provide you with access to stigma free counseling and testing services, access to treatment and access to prevention methods, such as PreP, which is now available in Barbados.
What can you do to join the fight?
We encourage you to join us in participating our World AIDS Day activity. Help get the message out baby sharing our campaign posts on our social media platforms (Instagram and Facebook) surrounding our World AIDS day messaging with your networks, so that they too can become educated on the history, meaning and goals of World AIDS Day. But remember, the fight against HIV cannot be for just one day! Continue to have healthy discussions with your peers on prevention, testing, and treatment, and encourage them to “Know Your Status!”
Info-graphics compliments of