This April, AIDS United President and CEO Jesse Milan Jr. delivered a powerful keynote address at the 2020 American Medical Student Convention.
The convention, which was held virtually due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, brought together medical students, physicians and health care experts to share ideas, connect and advocate for change as students prepare for their careers in health care.
Milan’s address focused on trust as it relates to trauma, privilege and humility — and what that trust means for people living with or affected by HIV in seeking health care, especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Today, all of us in this COVID-19 world are wondering who can we trust? But my people have a longstanding fear of trusting [providers] that well predated COVID-19,” Milan said. “Mistrust of health care providers is deeply rooted in so many of the communities I represent tonight. Indeed, for many of us it’s been passed down from generations and it’s being passed around from person to person today.
“My people’s personal histories of trauma are already in the room with us when you walk in the door.”
Watch the full speech in the video at the top of this post.