On Friday association „Pozityvus gyvenimas" (Positive Life), which is taking care and helping for HIV patients and for those who are at-risk groups in Klaipeda's region, started its activities in the newly established center of STI prevention, consultations and social services at Taikos ave. 107. As a beginning, here it was symbolically given start for "European HIV-hepatitis testing week".
Implemented a dream
Association volunteers, who repaired rented premises from Klaipeda Municipality by their own hands, are glad that with the help and support of GILEAD Polish pharmacy company, „Positive Life“ could finally make their dream come true. Now there is a place where anyone who are interested could come for consultations, support or free security tools. It is not a secret that many at-risk people does not know where they could be tested or treated, that is why many of them shows up for the doctor too late, or even without complete treatment disappears from it. A place where they could always come at any time is needed urgently.
Unfortunately, “Positive Life” volunteers did not meet their guests from municipality, Public Health Center and other institutions, because they did not come, although they were invited. Maybe the rain was the main reason of absence?..
Imprtant aid for everyone
“We invite everyone, especially young people who are socially unsecured, have no income, likes to experiment with their health, consume spirits, drugs and so on.”- Invites the head of the Association Jurgis Andriuška, who himself for many years is living with HIV diagnosis.
“ People are afraid to visit the doctor and to be tested for HIV (“ What they will think about me?”), avoiding to stand in queues, while waiting for a consultation. A problem for them is even to go to the pharmacy, that is why that kind of cabinet is necessary. Here, everyone who wants can come; if there are any questions, or if there is a need to get not only the information, but support”,- said Addictive Disease Center mental health nurse Audronė Kviešienė, who is also providing support for „Positive Life“.
Activist Mrs. Nijole have been involved in the association activities after facing the problems of information, psychological support, when HIV was diagnosed for her close person. The association gave the help that she needed, and today she helps by herself to others, because she knows how important it is.
Possible go testing for free
The European testing for HIV and hepatitis week has been started. Fast testing for human immunodeficiency virus antibodies setting Klaipeda citizens can take till November 27. For that purpose the premises have been provided by Klaipeda’s health Care Center (Taikos pr. 76, room 418 ).
Our volunteers noticed the fact, that although rapid tests could be carried out even at home (they are freely sold in the pharmacies), but the law does not permit them to be made in consultation office – it required to have a hygiene certificate, a license to practice medicine.
“ It is absurd: A person, who have bought quick test, can test it in the city on the bench, however, he cannot apply to a professional nurses, that works in the consultation center. He has to go to clinic that is making those tests, but that kind of clinics are hard to found”,- says the center “hosts”. Their hope is to make the law softer, for at-risk groups own sake. There is no doubt that they would prefer consulting cabinets more often than usually- there would be no queues, to preserve human privacy, and if the test results is positive, they would also be provided with all the necessary information and psychological help.
Translated in English by Svajunė Mickevičiutė