Thank You, David. As a HIV positive from Greece, I hope one day became similar message from my Prime Minister or King Constantine II. Maybe in 10 years?
“King Constantine II” the ex-king of Greece who has lived in a swanky house in Hampstead for the last 40 years? What’s he got to do with Greece, now that Greece is a republic? You’re not one of those Greeks who actually believes that Greece will become a monarchy again, are you? Constantine quit Greece when the going got tough, he fled, he didn’t give a damn about Greece. Forget him. Forget all royal parasites in fact.
But I still love him… And His Majesty loves his country, I am absolutely shore. Once King, all ways King: He is not corrupt, have excellent reputation and relationships around the globe, and, well, yes, Greek mentality (or ‘national character’) is not the most perfect in world, You know this too, I think? Greece needs person like He in this very difficult moment. I am not naive: nothing will change very quickly, if we became a monarchy again. But – and this is the biggest irony – Greece already is and all ways was a ‘monarchy’: this of Orthodox Church. Well, then maybe its much more better to have a true King than clerical President of ‘Republic’ or Patriarch of Athens in the thrown.
I agree the Orthodox Church behaves rather like a monarch in Greece. Greece really needs to cut out the Orthodox Church in the way it cut out the monarch. Long Live the Third Hellenic Republic!
By the way, Pavlos, last week I sent PinkNews the article about the hospital in Greece that can no longer afford to give HIV+ patients antiretrovirals, but, sadly, they did not publish it. Shame. I know how bad things are in Greece right now, particularly for many HIV+ people who are not well.
My dear Eddy, I accept all, what You say. But I still think, that the royal family and secular monarch in particular is the best alternative against clerical rule, especially in so conservative European countries like Greece (with fixation on family, I mean) – because he, as the secular symbol and authority of the state, is a ‘contender’ for local religious authority (even if he not in favor of this, because is very close to the Church, very devote etc. – its not matters, he can change this social rules not). Its like ‘competition’ – with whom can identify (conservative) people himself better? In countries without a monarch only alternative for this is old religious men, who lives in celibacy and hates gays (like the Pope in clerical Republic of Italy).
Pavlos, I most certainly agree with you that Greece needs leadership, particularly at this time. However, I am a rationalist, and I don’t believe that the answer lies in looking backwards, towards models of leadership that existed in the past, such as leadership by monarch, leadership by religious authority, leadership by dictator, and so forth. Greece did very well to establish itself as a Republic. It however did not do well in allowing the Orthodox clerics to write themselves into the revised constitution! Greece needs to return to the spirit of 1974 and Republicanism, to separate itself from the Orthodox church, and to make it possible for decent Greek citizens to rise to positions of leadership. I know a number of extraordinary people in Greece but they are fearful of going anywhere near the corrupt political system. What on earth is going to happen, eh?
Greece needs new people and new elite. But maybe this ‘very new people’ will be forgotten ‘old’, who knows? All still is possible and nothing is forbidden. Anyway, the time of life long exiles and ‘persona non grata’ is out.
So 600 people with undiagnosed are at risk of not receiving life saving treatments. That’s bad enough
But the actions of this Government have already pushed ave’ 32 people a WEEK (Gov figures- April 2012) to die from aggravated illnesses or suicides due, in my and many others view, to the ‘cruel’, inhuman’ and ‘degrading’ (as the UN Conv on Human Rights puts it) meted out by the appalling Duncan-Smith’s Work Capacity Test and removal of DLA et al. ( The Work Tests devisor Prof Gregg wishes he’d never done it, and reviser Prof Harrington resigned) Now the Joseph Rowntree Trust also reports sharp rise in working people poverty.
Add the stigma against HIv, and other illnesses incl mental health; and the lack of living waged jobs anyway from a stagnating economy courtesy of Osborne.
WHy bother to get tested anyway?- May as well die off. In my view and from many of those I speak to, that’s what this ‘ideologically insane’ Gov wants for those with chronic ill health anyway
The stagnating economy has got more to do with Gordon Brown’s policies than anyone else’s to be fair.
Once we moved away from the Welfare State being anything other than a safety net to support people while they were getting back on their feet it was doomed to failure, and whilst I accept that the current welfare reforms are difficult for many people, much of that is due to the fact that they have been labouring under the misapprehension that those in work would be happy and willing to support an ever increasing number of people not supporting themselves and their lifestyles.
I have no issue with helping those who cannot help themselves but there have been rather too many people who can help themselves and have been doing exactly that.
Every one person claiming benefits who doesn’t need to is contributing to the hardships those genuinely in need are currently facing.
And by the way, being HIV positive does not automatically mean you cannot work.
“And by the way, being HIV positive does not automatically mean you cannot work.”
I would say it was highly unlikely unless you were in the advanced stages.
You don’t really have to be “in the advanced stages” to suffer from enough secondary issues that will affect your everyday life.
liver toxicity, for example, is not an issue for only patients in “advanced stages”, but it carries enough of a problematic that it can easily interfere with keeping up a regular work schedule.
Sure, you can DO the work.
but running back and forth to a hospital for surgeries, treatments, tests, repeated doctor’s appointments, WILL get in the way of a regular 9 to 5 type work.
Many of the long term survivors of HIV are incapacitated & are unable to work due to the lasting damage done as a result of the very early drug treatments such as D4T, DdI, AZT, Indinavir, full dose Ritonavir. Conditions such as peripheral neuropathy can be very debilitating & many suffer with lipoatrophy (fat loss) which can also cause problems with walking & sitting for any length of time. We should not rule out the psychological effects that HIV has had on these individuals – many thought they were going to die, I think it is fair to say that some wish they had passed on, because of the emotional problems HIV has left in it’s wake.
HIV can be very debilitating in the era of today’s modern treatments, about 10% of people have HIV induced complications such as irritable bowel syndrome, severe fatigue,and other conditions that are sometimes made worst by HIV itself (liver, kidney heart problems).
Prompt diagnosis is the key to overcoming some of these problems
W6_bloke, I agree. The people you have pointed to definitely need real care, financial and otherwise. And truly effective HIV-prevention strategies are needed to ensure that many others don’t eventually end up in similar circumstances.
@ Ray, Some 484,367 deaths in the UK for 2011 http://www.statistics.gov.uk/hub/population/deaths/mortality-rates
Kevin, that page leads to some very interesting information, but there is there a specific link amongst the many there which you think is pertinent to this discussion? Please post the relevant URL. Thank you.
Eddy hi, which link?
Hi Kevin. Which specific link are you drawing our attention to, and what is your point? Thanks.
there is there a specific link amongst the many there which you think is pertinent to this discussion? Please post the relevant URL. ?
Another issue here is that according to the HPA around 28,000 people access care in London, given that 100,000 people are diagnosed with HIV and 50% resides in London, some 22,000 people are missing out on treatment/support……. We also know that around 2,891 access care from outside London.
On the issue of DLA, it is known that around 8,500 people access DLA as HIV (primary condition) and that around 126 are support through the Indepedant Living Fund.
Have read your post twice, Kevin, but could you make the issue you are pointing to clearer? I can’t see what you’re driving at. Thanks.
If 100,000 people are diagnosed HIV already and accoring to the HPA, 28,000 people access care in London of the 50% (50,000 people) would leave 22,000 not accessing care.
Of the issue of DLA and ILF which support 8,500 and 126 respectfully.
So you’re pointing out that 22,000 are not accessing care in London although they have been diagnosed? Is that your point? Do you believe that there are 22,000 people in London who know they have HIV but who are doing nothing about it? Is this what you’re saying? Maybe you could elaborate.
Eddy hi, I quote the figures presented as found, it is for others to conclude any outcomes/perspective that arise, having these numbers correct would support services when funding is sought from PCT/LA……. as well as indiviuals in need of treatment and support. LA/PCT has a duty to carry out Impact Assessments on the needs of all it residents and where these numbers are inaccurate, failure may occur.
The 100,000 estimate includes the undiagnosed fraction, therefore there are approximately 75,000 diagnosed individuals who in theory should be in regular care.
Of those 75,000 roughly 15% are possibly lost to follow up therefore the number in full time care would be 63,750. The figure for London receiving continuous care is likely to be in the region of 30,000 which is close to the figure of 28,000
I hear what you say, Ray, and I have some sympathy for it. On the other hand, the UK’s debts are enormous and greater savings and cuts have to occur. For sure, of course, the corporations, like the banks, tax-avoiding Amazon, tax-avoiding Starbucks, and so forth, need to be chased. All tax-avoiders have to be chased, in fact. But at the same time, it is only right that the government tries to sort out those who genuinely need benefits because they cannot work. I know of one HIV+ person who believes that because he has one bad day per month he has a right not to work at all and a right to receive benefits continually! I know of another HIV+ couple who force their local hospital to send a taxi (at the hospital’s expense) to pick them and take them to the Sexual Health Clinic and to then take them home afterwards, when both people are fully capable of walking and catching public transport. I am sure these people are exceptions, but such exceptions add up and they cost us.
Hmm, interesting replies from all. But firstly would there be such a ‘deficit if the banks in the US /UK etc hadNOT gone virtually bankrupt due to deregulations going back to 1986 -(Thatcher/Reagan), 1990′s Bush Sr/Major demutalising building Socs into banks; Clinton,at the behest of Citicorp (see J Stiglitz) to remove 1930′s Glass/Stegal rules?
Too many people on benefits, even then, is due to lack of job creation anyway and to extent, decent pay overall.
Brown/Darling’s plans were working, but the election stopped it Cameron NOT WIN so no mandate as such for anything co-alition have done. Duncan Smith’s policies are basically the 19thC ‘Poor Laws’ again and a version of the Workhouse (unpaid ‘slave’ work for charities etc as in early 2012)
On HIV. Why not let people have a decent income, BUT gently urge them to do voluntary ONLY- If some progress to a decently paid job-fine if they feel up to it.
To finish off.
Also remember that HIV stigma; co-infections such as Hep B or C et al, and mental health probas either alongwith or because of HIV etc all can be barriers to full paid work. Again voluntary MAY be useful,so long as a Paid job for helthy person not taken. Recall there are still over 2.5 mill people unemployed (mostly healthy), those in work saying underemployed aswell as not getting decent income ( Food Banks expanding, as will malnourishment as has been seen from such in USA since 1980′s)
Give ALL a decent living income even if relatively low so they can spend and keep busnesses going (especially Small ones) Expand Co-ops et and Close ALL tax havens
See also New Economics Foundation reports Green New DEal, 21 Hours working week, Basic Incomes; and positivemoney.org for ending online money creation (97% of all ‘money’ now!)
Come on PIN, stop being such a binch of stick-in-the-muds.
This crappy site won’t even allow you to post the word A|DS.
On December 1st, how bloody sad and narrow-minded is that?
Well, I’ve just tried to test your assertion by trying to post a comment which included the word (1) with all 3 letters in uppercase, (2) with only the first letter in uppercase, and (3) with the second letter replaced with a ‘|’ symbol, you did, and the result was that the whole message did not immediately show. This one should because the word doesn’t appear here, in any form.
So you’re right! On World A|DS Day, PinkNews does not allow readers to post comments in which the word A|DS uses the capital I.
Surely this is a glitch, but it needs to be fixed pronto, PinkNews!
Probably because certain nasty people out there like to throw these words at gay people as some kind of insult. Strangely queer, fag, poof, bumboy, shirtlifter and many others are still allowed.
It should also be noted that this paper is Jewish run, so they also feel obliged to censor the word N@zi.
One assumes that by stopping people saying these words, the problem will simply disappear.
David Cameron, Edward Milliband, and others, listen! It’s all very well trotting out the politically-correct speech on World A|DS Day, but you need to turn your attention upon the Terrence Higgins Trust.
The government is giving THT millions to stop the spread of HIV but those millions are being spent on cushy salaries for a large staff and on THT next-to-useless ‘campaigns’.
THT is cowardly. It cooperates with the profit-driven gay-sex industries. They want to keep goading gay men into wild nights in saunas and all sorts of clubs because it means money. They don’t want THT spoiling the party. And THT have aquieced to their demands. THT has struck a kind of deal with them. THT produces ‘health warnings’, campaigns, and videos that condone the wild partying – where drinking and drug-taking occur, followed by unsafe sex . . . and more and more infections.
Change the record Eddie we are very bored of this one! Where is the proof that THT co-operates with profit-driven gay-sex industries? It is pointless trying to kid yourself that everyone wishes to subscribe to your way of thinking what happened to freedom of thinking, freedom of expression, freedom to have the sex people want, not sex according to your rather banal point of view.
Gay men make choices some are not good choices, but should these individuals not be made aware of the risks they are taking, or should we all just pretend that there are no sex clubs out there? Should we pretend that risky sex doesn’t happen, just brush it under the carpet? THT in recent years have moved away from campaigns that deal with risk reduction strategies which I think is a mistake. Higher rates of testing & consistent condom use will reduce new infection rates not perpetuating the stereotype that all gay men are sex craving party animals & that drugs / alcohol don’t exist.
The proof you ask for is in the failure of the THT to dramatically reduce HIV infection in men who have sex with men.
The proof that THT cooperates with the profit-driven gay-sex industries has been seen in all the sleazy so-called “Safe Sex” campaigns that THT has run, campaigns that encourage gay men to frequent the risky and drink-and-drug-fuelled environments of the gay-sex industries.
The proof is right in front of your eyes. Look at the figures. And look at the campaigns that transparently have not worked.
What is needed is group / 1 on 1 interventions that change behaviours – these things cost money. It takes at least 10 sessions to hope to change risky sexual behaviours in gay men, because often as you point out there are other factors involved such as the use of drugs & alcohol. This sort of intervention is not going to happen any time soon more is the pity.
We see the same problem in mental health – talking therapies are effective yet you have to be in a desperate state before you will get a referral & even when that referral comes through the waiting time for a limited course of treatment sessions can be many months.
There are 2 things that all gay men can do to reduce new HIV infections; 1) consistently use condoms 2) test at least once a year. 80% of new infections come from the 20% who are undiagnosed. There are a small minority of gay men fueling the epidemic, often these are the so called hard to reach cohort who need the very advice on harm reduction you are critical of.
You can give a roomful of young, healthy, and horny gay men 10 or more sessions in the hope that the training delivered will ensure that they will avoid all unsafe sex.
But on the very evening following the last of those 10 sessions, most of those young, healthy, and horny gay men will pick up a gay listings mag, see the alluring ads for “a good night out” in one of the clubs, choose one of them, then tank up with drink and drugs, and before the night is over a percentage of them will have engaged in unsafe sex. The statistics prove it. Sexual Health practitioners tell us that most people who have become infected did so as a result of an encounter in a highly sexual environment and while under the influence of drink or drugs. Facts.
So what do you suggest we do about it?
The only time I ever saw gay men sit up and actually take note was when their friends and acquaintances started dropping like flies and it scared the living sh|t out of people when they realised they might be next.
I have repeatedly posted an answer to your question, Spanner, and despite refreshing and reloading this Comments page repeatedly as well, my answer has not appeared! There’s a glitch in PN’s software and it’s a damned nuisance.
So, that short message got through. That means that the Comments system rejects certain basic formatting. So I’ll try to make my formatting more basic and try to post again!
Certainly I wouldn’t recommend the strategy of letting today’s gay men see all their friends and acquaintances dropping like flies. And neither do I think that it’s necessary to “scare the living sh*t” out of people.
However, Sexual Health professionals have regularly stated that a great many infections occur when people are in highly sexually-charged environments and where they are often under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
So, we clearly have two strategies presented to us:
1. diminish the highly sexually-charged environments
(this means not supporting the profit-driven gay-sex industries)
2. encourage gay men to beware of drink and drugs
(this too means discouraging them from those environments which urge gay men to over-drink and to “party” with drugs).
Excellent strategies, and no reason why not to pursue them . . . unless fearful of upsetting the gay-sex industries!
Ah! Have just noticed that Spanner did not write “sh*t” but he wrote “sh|t” – avoiding the letter ‘i’. And so finally I am learning how to make this software allow us to exercise free speech! :-)
Eddy, I have been trying to post all weekend and only discovered via a posting by Spanner on a related HIV discussion thread that PN has now sunken to censoring certain words and groupings of words.
Would you believe A!DS spelt the conventional way is banned from this close-minded site?
That is far from the only example, but by the day it is becoming clear that PN is being run to a left wing liberal agenda that wants to regulate our discussions with a “kill” filter if debate is too truthful and honest as opposed to conforming to the liberal PC groupthink consensus.
This is dangerous territory for PN to be entering as it is setting itself up as the Pravda of gay publishing.
Hi Samuel. I have noticed for some time that PN selects the news it presents with a certain “care”. To its credit, there’s a good amount of political stuff – about which we all love to air our views and “squabble”. They also throw in a regular amount of superficial nonsense which, presumably, they hope will attract the less “thinking” sort – articles like “Olympic gymnast Louis Smith: I’m a bit of a gay icon”! Not to PN’s credit is the fact that it generally avoids the realities of HIV and A!DS. To its credit It has observed World A!DS Day by presenting several articles about the issue, but we won’t be hearing much more about it beyond this week. I suspect they think it “too miserable” a subject and that it will drive readers away – which is idiotic, as people are drawn by the real, by quality.
The other week I read a horrifying report that a hospital in stricken Greece is no longer able to afford HIV medications for its HIV patients. I mailed story to PN but it didn’t appear.
the THT do a fantastic job and they provide all the information that is required of them. They tirelessly campaign, going out to clubs, pubs etc, they even have people to help on places like Gaydar.
There is a limit to what they can do though. They can only provide info they cannot be overlooking every individual to make sure they are acting in a safer sex manner.
Like it or not that responsibility is down to you, me and every other individual. Only individuals can be responsible for themselves. It is simply not fair to blame a very worthy organisation for individual choices.
I totally agree.
The old adage about taking a horse to water springs to mind.
I am a great believer in education, but ultimately if these people wish to live that lifestyle, it is entirely up to them.
I am sick and tired of the nanny state telling us what we should eat, don’t drink, don’t smoke, don’t take drugs, don’t sleep around etc etc.
Advice is good, lecturing and restricting people’s actions is not.
Sorry, Jock, but wouldn’t it be far wiser of the THT to deal with the problem of gay men being herded into those clubs and pubs you refer to? Wouldn’t it be a much wiser strategy to be working against those money-hungry pub-owners and club-owners, and working on altering the nature of the gay community’s most obvious leisure activities, so that for lots of gay men “gay lifestyle” doesn’t automatically mean “tart myself up, and get my tush down ti local club for the night”?
So, Jock, do tell me the last time the THT made an announcement denouncing bareback porn?
Or the last time they reached out to the younger generation of gays with truthful and honest facts about the consequences of HIV infection as opposed to swooping on sex clubs and saunas wherein the more sexually advanced clientele have already made up their minds what time of sex they’ll be indulging in?
The problem is the likes of THT and GMFA expend a disproportionate amount of their resources preaching to the converted in such environments whilst 21 year olds are experimenting with gay sex devoid of an instruction manual.
Just how many thousand of pounds, for example, did the initiation into the sleaze sex scene – http://www.hardcell.org.uk – cost to set up?
How many more seroconversions could that money have prevented had it been targeted more appropriately and effectively?
The annual spend on HIV drugs in the UK is now £858 million.
Am I really alone in noting the cause and effect?
Pre the House of Lords report a budget of £750million, base upon 2011 HPA update http://www.hpa.org.uk/NewsCentre/NationalPressReleases/2011PressReleases/110901HIVdiagnosesdata/ which suggests £484 million an increase of £49 million from the previous year and extrapalate £50 million might suggest a spend of £534 million.
I also include for reference and use. http://www.dh.gov.uk/health/2012/02/baseline-allocations/
Well done David Cameron.
It is great that we have such leaders in community and politics making sure they contribute to the extremely important message, for an extremely important day and cause.
If this buffoon of a Prime Minister really believes that why has he cut spending on HIV and Sexual Health serivces – LIAR!!!
Indeed! It’s just like the Torys’ speaking out against |srael’s announcement of two days ago that it is going to build even MORE settlements on Palestinan land. At the very same time, the USA and the Torys are supplying |srael with arms!
In just the same way, Cameron has made sure he has done the politically-correct thing on World A|DS Day and spoken fine words . . . but what he needs to do is direct the Health Department to analyse what is ineffective about about the HIV-prevention strategies that have been used in recent years.
It’s not that the strategies are ineffective it’s a basic fault ,if you will, in human nature.People take risks all the time still smoke and drink ,take drugs, etc etc all because “It Won’t Happen to ME” That mindset is unlikely to be changed by this or any other government. The state can only do so much then it’s up to individuals to decide if a given risk is worth the reward.
I agree that the state can only do so much, but I sincerely believe that the state needs to take responsibility for the implementation of much more effective strategies. They have farmed out this important work and I believe they need to take it back, thoroughly review it, and ensure better strategies are implemented.
One of the reasons why the NHS is being slowly turned into a profit-driven business is that the government can see that the drugs bill in years to come is going to be far more enormous than it is now. Somebody has got to pay for all the horrendously expensive HIV medications required for all those people who are HIV+. The only other option is to somehow legislate that the pharmaceutical companies provide HIV medications to the NHS at low prices . . . but that won’t work, because the pharmaceutical companies won’t keep looking for the cure for HIV unless the money keeps rolling in.
Seeing as current studies show that those who are POZ and on HAART tend to have viral levels below the risk of communication, this is common sense.
As well, those who know they are POZ also tend to seek out others who are, as being serodiscordant causes too many stresses. Sex is great, but many also seek love and affection.
Now we’re told 25,000 of the 100,000 HIV-infected people in the UK don’t know they’re infected (up from the 10,000 reported up until now).
More than half the 100,000 infections were acquired since 2000, so we’ll assume that the 25,000 “unknowns” is at least equal to the number of those infected during the 1980s when no effective treatments were available.
So what’s changed since then to explain why we’re not seeing hospital wards overflowing with A|Ds patients and pages of newspaper obituaries for those whose immune systems have collapsed?
Is the 25,000 figure just a cynical tactic designed to scare us all to test, similar to the 56 Dean Street electric chair ad:- which’d be rich considering the HIV sector’s refusal to use such tactics where genuine HIV prevention strategies are concerned?
Or HIV has evolved/mutated to stage where it no longer culls vast swaths of those infected, in which case why aren’t we being told?
In any event we are not hearing the full truth.
Amid the pleading for us to test, we’re missing a great big elephant in the room.
If we’re to believe that 25,000 people in the UK are undiagnosed, isn’t there a far greater need for identifying them and putting them on meds than the perceived risk they will spread HIV to others?
If 25,000 really are undiagnosed, then we would expect a great big ticking time-bomb ready to go off in the next 10 years in which a good majority will either be living with full-blown A!DS or have succumbed to its ravaging toll by 2022.
Why isn’t THAT mentioned anywhere?
In reality we can breath a collective sigh of relief from GAY’s record-breaking testing day as clearly the prevalence of undiagnosed infection is way less than we have been led to believe.
The HIV industry – and no doubt the pharmas – will, perversely, be knocked for six by the disclosure that only 6 out of 750 testees were found to be positive as it obliterates the very foundation on which the call to testing has been pushed.
As you know Samuel I have frequently suggested that we are seeing people being diagnosed with HIV at very late stages. From accounts on the UK forum I am a member do there are many people being diagnosed with PCP, Kaposi’s Sarcoma, and other more complex opportunistic infections. Many of the recently diagnosed individuals are presenting with CD4 cell counts well below 350 which is considered to be a late diagnosis.
This suggests to me that there is indeed a ticking time bomb as you describe it & I am aware that HIV Consultants around the UK are increasingly dealing with those who have been diagnosed late & as a result do not fair so well on treatment.
I am very concerned that HIV related deaths are not reducing, they are in fact beginning to rise, in 2011 the number of deaths was near 600 which is really worrying. This is why I am very pro testing, to me it’s a no brainer!