December 1st is World Aids Day, a day to remember people we have lost to AIDS and those living with HIV. I'm sure we have all been touched in one way or another by this disease, in my case I have a friend living with HIV and controlling it with drugs. When he was diagnosed it came as a complete shock, a blood transfusion when he was a boy had been infected and now so was he. At that time HIV was a pre-cursor to full blown AIDS and in reality the time-bomb was ticking away, however in the (many) years that have followed our knowledge of the disease and how to control it has grown to a point where long-term control of HIV is not only possible but the norm. We at IARS stand hand-in-hand today with our colleagues at the Terrance Higgins Trust, wearing our red ribbons with pride as a mark of solidarity and in the hope of a world where HIV stigma is a thing of the past.
There is still no cure for HIV and even with our advanced knowledge of how it is spread, 17 people in the UK will be diagnosed with HIV by the end of the day. So today if you have an opportunity to buy a red ribbon take it. Your donation may be the final pound that pays for the scientist who finds the cure.
For more about the Terrence Higgins Trust go to: http://www.tht.org.uk/