POZLife: Life from the Infected and Effected point of veiw.

Myth: There’s a Cure for AIDS

Posted by pozlife on November 17, 2007

While most respondents to a nine-country survey said AIDS is always a fatal illness, many incorrectly believed a cure is available. The research project involved 4,510 interviews conducted in the United States, United Kingdom, Russia, France, China, India, Mexico, Brazil, and South Africa. It was commissioned by the MAC AIDS Fund, a philanthropy established by Estee Lauder’s MAC cosmetics company.

Among the survey’s findings:
*In India, 59 percent of people polled believed a cure for HIV infection is available. *Nearly half of all respondents believed most people with HIV are receiving treatment; in fact, 2006 data show only one patient in five is being treated.
*Almost half of respondents said they felt uncomfortable walking next to someone with HIV; 52 percent would not want to live in the same house as a patient; and 79 percent said they would not want to date someone with the virus.
*HIV is spreading, in part, because women are uncomfortable discussing safe sex practices with their partners, said 73 percent of respondents.

"When people believe the disease is not fatal and that there is a cure, that’s because we haven’t educated them well," said Dr. Marsha Martin, director of HIV/AIDS programs in the office of the mayor of Oakland, Calif.

"The results of this survey, coupled with the recent failure of the most promising AIDS vaccine trial, underscore that we are not going to vaccinate or cure our way out of this epidemic," said Nancy Mahon, the MAC AIDS Fund’s executive director. "All of us, particularly in the funding community, need to redouble our efforts and resources and focus on basic and effective HIV prevention programs that address gender, age, and race differences in a direct and culturally competent way."

[This summary provided by the CDC National Center for HIV, STD, and TB Prevention | Reuters Health | Nov. 13, 2007 | Anthony J. Brown, MD]

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