HIV/Aids and Your Rights
The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a virus that attacks and gradually destroys the immune system which defends the body against infections.
The virus is mainly transmitted through sexual intercourse but can also be passed down from mother to child during pregnancy, childbirth or breastfeeding and can also be spread through the transfusion of infected blood, or by sharing needles.
South Africa has one of the highest HIV infection rates in the world. According to UNAIDS, in 2018, 7 700 000 people were living with HIV in South Africa. It's important to get regularly tested, especially if you're sexually active. Knowing your status helps reduce the spread of the virus.
If you need more information, or need answers to questions, you can contact the HIV/AIDS helpline which operates 24 hours on a toll - free telephone number at 0800 012 322.
Premier Alan Winde encourages citizens to get tested. "Knowing your HIV status is important so that you can begin treatment if necessary and manage your health. Let us also support those who have HIV or Aids, and break the stigma which is still associated with this virus and which has a negative impact on the dignity of those living with it."
People who are infected with HIV face discrimination because of their HIV positive status. If you are HIV positive or have been diagnosed with Aids, it's important to remember that you have the same rights as everyone else.
If you are HIV positive or have Aids, you have the right to live your life with respect, dignity and freedom from discrimination and blame.
If you have any questions about HIV or Aids, you can phone the free 24-hour AIDS Helpline at 0800 012 322.
If you feel that your rights are being violated, you can report this to the South African Human Rights Commission. You can also approach any of the NPO's in the health sector supporting people living with HIV.
|Government Body:||(The Government of South Africa)|
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