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As a health and dental worker, you and other
community and religious leaders can help people
with HIV get health services, housing and jobs.
You can help people treat each other with
respect, and you can encourage people who
have HIV to become involved in their treatment
and in their community’s activities.
Remember, you can help support the human rights of
people living with HIV or someone who people think
is living with HIV. Discriminating against them violates
their human rights.
HIV is not a curse or a
Set an Example and Share Good Information
The example you set and the information you share will help fight the fear
people have of knowing, touching or living with someone who has HIV.
Make sure people know that HIV is not spread by ordinary daily contact. HIV
is not spread by hugging, touching, holding or shaking hands, by dancing,
using the toilet after someone with HIV, or eating food prepared by a person
with HIV. People can share dishes, towels, and bed sheets and not become
infected with HIV. Also, it is not possible to get infected from someone’s
tears, sneeze or spit, or from a mosquito bite.
Other viruses such as measles or chicken pox are spread easily through the
air. But HIV spreads only if certain body fluids of a person with HIV get inside
As a health worker, you can help people make decisions based on good
information and not fear. A good way to begin is to plan a meeting to discuss
HIV with other health workers in your area or region and with someone from
a regional HIV organization. He or she can help health workers learn about
HIV so they will be able to provide accurate, consistent information to the
people in their communities. They can also learn about the best ways to
treat the infections that people with HIV often get.
A person with HIV can get sick very easily
with many common health problems such as
pain, cough, skin rashes, fever and diarrhea.
For information about these problems,
see Where There Is No Doctor, or another
general medical book.