December 1 every year is known as World AIDS Day. The purpose of World AIDS Day is to raise people's awareness of the AIDS epidemic caused by the spread of the HIV virus.
HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) is a virus that attacks the body’s immune system. If HIV is not treated, it can lead to AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome). AIDS is the most severe phase of HIV infection. People with AIDS have such badly damaged immune systems that they get an increasing number of severe illnesses. Without treatment, people with AIDS typically survive about three years (CDC, 2021).
The impact of the HIV virus makes preventive and promotive programs very important to do. Promotive activities can be carried out by means of health promotion or providing education about HIV/AIDS. The aim is to increase public knowledge and awareness.
While preventive activities aim to prevent the transmission of the virus from one person to another through specific protection. Prevention of HIV/AIDS can be done with the ABCDE method (Indonesian Ministry of Health, 2014):
A= Abstinence: not having sex outside of marriage
B= Be faithful: staying faithful to one sexual partner and not having multiple sexual partners
C= Condom: using condoms during sexual intercourse
D= Don't use drugs: do not consume drugs, especially those who use injections and use syringes interchangeably
E = Education: have received the right education about HIV/AIDS so that they get the right understanding
Our HIV/AIDS Program
We have something big to announce related to our new HIV/AIDS program. Westerlaken Foundation - Yayasan Bali Bersih together with Bali Kids will start running our HIV/AIDS Education Program supported by NEBA Foundation and Wilde Ganzen Foundation. We will operate a mobile clinic to provide health services to children in villages as well as provide education about HIV/AIDS.
Yesterday we had our initial meeting to make agreements to share roles in implementing this program as soon as possible. We hope that public awareness of HIV/AIDS will increase with this program. A lot of false information about HIV/AIDS spread in the public. This makes people with HIV/AIDS stigmatized in society.
Improving education about HIV/AIDS can help reduce and eliminate this stigma. We all have to avoid the virus, not the person. Stop the Stigma!
Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention. 2021. About HIV/AIDS. Centers Dis. Control Prev. URL https://www.cdc.gov/hiv/basics/whatishiv.html (12.1.21).
Indonesian Ministry of Health. 2014 Infodatin Data and Information Center of the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Indonesia. Jakarta: Indonesian Ministry of Health