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You, Me & HIV - Brazil
Wilson is able to maintain low levels of HIV in his body by taking antiretroviral treatment (ART). Whilst ART is not a cure for HIV, it works by reducing the amount of HIV in his body, enabling him to fight off infections and keep his immune system healthy – the very thing HIV attacks.
Wilson fully adheres to his treatment, lives a healthy lifestyle, and has regular visits with his doctor. This has helped him to keep HIV at an undetectable level in his body.
His wife Bruna remains HIV-negative, and they have successfully conceived two HIV-negative children. Bruna and Wilson are classed as a serodiscordant couple (where one partner is living with HIV and the other is not). Couples like them are able to conceive HIV-negative children; when the male is HIV-positive, the chance of HIV transmission to his partner can be reduced by ensuring his viral load is undetectable, and by consistently using condoms. When the female is HIV-positive, prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) services limit the chance of HIV being passed from mother to baby.
Brazil has been very successful in minimising the impact of the HIV epidemic, by being proactive in its response through wide-scale media campaigns to get people to test, and scaling up treatment access. 1 By increasing HIV testing, it makes more people aware of their status and in a better position to minimise transmission to others – such as the case of Wilson and Bruna.
AVERT’s resources section is an excellent place to start to learn more about HIV, and share resources with your friends and family – check it out!
- 1. UNGASS (2012) ' Brazil: Global AIDS Response Country Progress Report'