Just Found Out? : How do I get the care I need? - by Staff

POZ - Health, Life and HIV
Subscribe to:
POZ magazine
E-newsletters
Join POZ: Facebook MySpace Twitter Pinterest
Tumblr Google+ Flickr MySpace
POZ Personals
Sign In / Join
Username:
Password:
POZ Focus

Back to home » HIV 101 » Just Found Out?

Table of Contents



Just Found Out?

Why me?

Where can I go for support?

Will I die?

Who do I tell?

Who will want me?

What's happening to my body?

How do I get the care I need?

What lab tests should I take?

Will treatment work?

Will I start treatment?

HIV Clinics for Teens

 
What You're Talking About
Gay-on-Gay Shaming: The New HIV War (blog) (27 comments)

Desert Migration - Focus on aging with HIV/AIDS (16 comments)

Concerns on HIV/AIDS Health Care Gaps in ACA Rollout (9 comments)

'Undetectable' Is the New 'Negative'? (8 comments)

The Fury of the PrEP Debate and Facts to Win It (blog) (8 comments)

Woman Sues City of Dearborn for HIV Discrimination by Police (8 comments)
Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle

Shingles

Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV


emailprint

How do I get the care I need?

by Staff

Looking for Dr. Right

For HIVers, finding the right doctor is key—you’ll be making important, and sometimes very difficult, decisions together. These tips will help you in your hunt:

1. LOOK FOR AN HIV SPECIALIST. There is no accredited “HIV specialty,” but many of the best HIV doctors focus on infectious diseases or internal medicine. To find them, contact the American Academy of HIV Medicine (aahivm.org; 866.241. 9601) or call your local AIDS service organization (ASO), which you can find by calling 800.342.AIDS or searching the POZ ASO Directory.

“I feel I can tell my doctor anything that’s going on. She’ll always talk to me on the friend-to-friend level. If she finds out I’m not taking my medicine, she tries to find out why and tries to get me back on track.” —Marvelyn Brown, Nashville, TN, Diagnosed: 2003

2. INTERVIEW PROSPECTIVE DOCS. Before you commit, ask the following questions:

• “How many patients with HIV have you treated?” Studies show that HIVers tend to do best under the care of docs who have lots of experience with positive patients.

• “Are you aggressive with HIV treatment?” If you’re open to trying experimental or alternative options, a cautious doctor won’t be a good fit—and vice versa.

• “Who’s the boss, you or the patient?” Even if you like a take-charge doctor, he or she should listen to your concerns. Taking responsibility for your own health will give you an upper hand against the virus.

• “Can I call or e-mail you with questions between visits?” Availability is key.

“I remember being very grateful that my doctor was a friend of mine and was someone that I connected with. It made the information a little easier. I didn’t freak out as much.” —Joshua Sacks, Washington, DC, Diagnosed: 2004

3. TRUST YOUR FEELINGS. When you’re talking, do you feel listened to? Can you see yourself being totally honest with this person about gross bodily functions and personal issues like being depressed or missing doses? Listen to your gut—it doesn’t matter how brilliant your doctor is if the two of you don’t click.

4. BE YOUR OWN ADVOCATE. Good doctors love patients who are engaged and prepared. Start a treatment log where you can keep your pre-HIV medical history, copies of your lab reports, lists of your meds and supplements, and notes about symptoms and questions. Having all this info at your fingertips will help you get the most out of every office visit.    

“[I was looking for] a place that wasn’t homophobic. I wanted to deal with a gay-friendly staff. There are some people that I know from groups that I don’t want to bump into so I’d rather go somewhere far from home.” —Rafael Lopez, Bronx, NY, Diagnosed: 2003



[ Go to top ]

Join POZ Facebook Twitter Google+ MySpace YouTube Tumblr Flickr
Quick Links
Current Issue

HIV 101
HIV Testing
Safer Sex
Find a Date
Newly Diagnosed
Disclosing Your Status
Starting Treatment
Search for the Cure
POZ Stories
POZ TV
Read the Blogs
Visit the Forums
Women
African American
Latino
Providers
Job Listings
Events Calendar


    adoniz89
    san dimas
    California


    InDefaultOf
    Seattle
    Washington


    cortaza100
    Chicago
    Illinois


    blaze11212
    brooklyn
    New York
Click here to join POZ Personals!
Ask POZ Pharmacist

Talk to Us
Poll
Do you enjoy books with HIV-positive characters?
Yes
No

Survey
Mind Matters

more surveys
Contact Us
We welcome your comments!
[ about Smart + Strong | about POZ | POZ advisory board | partner links | advertising policy | advertise/contact us | site map]
© 2014 Smart + Strong. All Rights Reserved. Terms of use and Your privacy.
Smart + Strong® is a registered trademark of CDM Publishing, LLC.