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HAYO SOPHY: Stop associating HIV with certain people

Anyone can get the virus because it does not discriminate

In Summary

•Some people assume that sex workers are the only ones infected by the virus, and therefore get intimate without knowing the HIV status of their partners.

•People have branded them HIV positive and this has increased the number of infections.

OraQuick HIV Self Test Kit
OraQuick HIV Self Test Kit

The myth that HIV is rampant among a certain group of people is very misleading and people must shun such ideas to reduce the number of new infections.

Anyone can get the virus because it does not discriminate. Therefore everyone needs to get tested.

Some people assume that sex workers are the only ones infected by the virus, and therefore get intimate without knowing the HIV status of their partners.

People have branded them HIV positive and this has increased the number of infections.

People forget that we have people who might have acquired HIV from their mothers during birth.

You can only prove that a person is HIV positive when they show you their HIV test result, which in most cases does not happen. 

People with small body sizes or those who are extremely slender have been mistakenly thought to be HIV positive.

Society believes that such people are ill and in most cases, they spread rumours and stigmatise them even though they are not HIV positive.

The community wrongly believes that those who are healthy and chubby cannot get the virus. That is however a wrong belief.

They might be healthy but on medication to fight the virus and boost their immune.

Students queue to get HIV testing kits at the vending machine.
Students queue to get HIV testing kits at the vending machine.
Image: DOUGLAS OKIDDY

When people contract diseases such as tuberculosis, measles and typhoid, most society members start talking ill about them by thinking that such diseases are a direct ticket to one being HIV positive.

Although at some point these diseases can be an early sign of HIV in the blood, it does not guarantee that a person with such a disease is HIV positive.

People should stop stigmatising others.

Society should understand that even the rich suffer from this virus.

Poverty does not reflect the state of being HIV positive, a person can be poor but healthy, and on the other hand, a person can be rich but ill.

People should be precautious to avoid the rise in new infections.

Those with HIV are not branded, so everyone must take care.

Shallow thinking and myths of all kinds concerning HIV must be avoided.

Let people get tested to completely eradicate new HIV infections.

Preventive measures such as the use of condoms must also be considered where necessary.

Edited by Kiilu Damaris