You can do this. You are not alone.
HIV can be treated, and many people live long healthy lives after diagnosis. It’s good to remember the most important person in taking care of your health is you, and you are not alone. The key is to get care and treatment as soon as you can. The person who gave you your test results will have referred you to the Manitoba HIV Program so that you can start your HIV care.
What is the Manitoba HIV Program?
The Manitoba HIV Program team can help you find the care you need and make smart choices for your health. We do this many ways, including:
- Working with your local health care provider such as a doctor or nurse
- Connecting you to other services such as counselling, family support, or other therapies
- Helping you get the care you need to live a healthy life
- Use special technology to help if you live in a rural or remote area
What do I need to know?
Today’s HIV treatments are usually very simple.
New HIV medications are easy to take and usually cause few side effects. Treatment can help you stay healthy and greatly lowers your chance of passing HIV on to others.
You can help keep yourself and others safe.
HIV can be passed to others during sex or by sharing equipment to use drugs (such as needles and cookers). But you can do many things to stay safe. For example, you can take your HIV medications regularly to keep HIV under control. You can use condoms when you have sex. If you use drugs, avoid sharing equipment such as needles and cookers. HIV can also be passed on during pregnancy, birth or nursing, but with proper care and treatment most people can have an HIV-negative baby. Talk to a public health nurse or other health worker to learn more.
If you use drugs:
Avoid sharing equipment. Use new needles and equipment every time. For more information on where to obtain Harm Reduction Supplies, check the map here: www.streetconnections.ca
When having sex:
Protect yourself by always using a condom (internal or external) or sex dams.
For more information visit
Using Condoms – catie.ca
If you are pregnant:
The Manitoba HIV Program will work closely with you and your care team to keep you and your baby safe.
Getting support is important.
Connect with your healthcare team to find out about supports, groups, counselling, and other resources in your area.
You don’t have to tell everyone you have HIV
You don’t have to tell everyone you have HIV. There are many reasons why you might like to keep your health private. But you do have a legal duty to tell your sex partner(s) you have HIV before some kinds of sex. This is called disclosure. If you have questions about when you need to tell someone about your HIV status:
- speak with the team you will be seeing for HIV care.
- you can also contact the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network at www.aidslaw.ca.
LEARN THE BASICS
There are many amazing resources online to help you learn more about HIV. CATIE is Canada’s most trusted site and the best place to start is to learn the Basics about HIV, what it is, how it is transmitted, and more.
JUST DIAGNOSED WITH HIV
CATIE has more information for those recently diagnosed with HIV including information on what you need to know and what you can do.
SEX FRIENDLY MANITOBA
Sex friendly Manitoba supports healthy sexuality throughout the province regardless of your HIV status. The website will also answer any questions related to HIV transmission and other sexually transmitted or blood-borne infections, like Hepatitis C, Gonorrhea and Syphilis.
NINE CIRCLES COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTRE
Nine Circles Community Health Centre provides care, treatment and health programming for people living with HIV, regardless of where they get their HIV care and treatment. For more information, please visit their website: