While trying to work on my Thesis (pediatric AIDS). Just thought I'll share some important information with you all. I had this conversation with a friend of mine who is a certified Doctor, he ranks at consultant/attending level. I was asked by him to give a talk on HIV/AIDS to teens and ask them to voice out there opinion (I will share some of their opinions at the end of this post). Before the talk, I sat down with Him and I asked is it really necessary to give this talk? why do I have to talk to this very young people about such stuffs?, and he told me this very important piece of information which I am going to share with you all. He asked me have you ever heard about the window of Hope? My reply was a quick No. He went ahead to sketch a rough graph for me (I have kinda re-done the sketch below :-) comic relief huh, pls note its just a rough)
He then said "Notice how the number of people living with HIV (marked just as HIV in my sketch) between the age of 9 to 15 years is practically almost zero. This is the window of Hope". Firstly let me give you reasons why at this ages we have very few number of people living with HIV: This is because most Children born with the virus will have most probably gone on to pass away by the time they get to about 9-10years. And after about 15 a lot of teenagers will become sexually active and get infected with the virus. So why is it called The Window of Hope in HIV? Think about the Impact it will make if every child between the age of 9 to 14 years, is taught/has a bit of knoledge about this thing called HIV. Just take a moment to think, what difference do you think it will make? please leave me a comment below on what you think and spread the word around to friends and family and let me know what they think.
Back to some of the opinions some of the teens had, I must say it was indeed alarming, but I would like to share one thing in particular from that discussion. Which is the issue of condoms being placed in hotels (well in d western world this might not really be an issue but in Nigeria in particular, it is a big deal, people add religion into the whole matter but am not going to go into that now.) and most of them were strongly against it, again for very alarming/funny reasons. I tired to explain to them how it is there to prevent, and you know all sorts of people go to hotels and do all sorts of thing, so we have to prevent the spread of STDs and help save this people, but all my talk was in vain. So I asked them 2 questions. If you have a child that has decided to live a wayward life would you then advice him to use condoms? the answers were mixed but I got a lot of yes. I then asked how many of you here if you heard tomorrow that there was a vaccine again HIV would go and take it? please stand up. EVERYONE GOT UP. My point exactly we are preaching the same message here which is PREVENTION!!!!
P.S just thought I should share thisMy approach to HIV is a simple ABC, (pls note this is mine personally you can adopt it if you like but everyone is free to have their opinions). I use this/will use this to talk to anyone be it patients, friends etc on the HIV issues.
Abstinence, if you do not wish to abstain or your married/have a partner
Be faithful to your partner. and if not or if your partner is infected