HIV Social Support

 

YorSexualHealth (YSH) runs a free and confidential support service for people living with HIV and their carers.

Medications for HIV are so good that a person living with HIV can live a long and healthy life. However, a HIV diagnosis can still be difficult and stressful, so our team are here to support you.

The family and friends of people living with HIV often need support too, which is why we also provide services to carers as well.

You can be referred by a member of YSH staff, you can contact us directly or you can self-refer online here. 

If you are living with HIV, we can support you with:

  • Self-management of your physical and mental health.
  • Social and economic wellbeing.
  • Peer-support opportunities.

We will help you to identify how HIV affects your life and how to cope with any issues and symptoms that you are experiencing. This includes techniques that will allow you to make daily decisions that will improve your health and wellbeing.

Click here for more information on condoms, including how to get free condoms.

Undetectable = Untransmittable 

We can also support you in preventing onward transmission.

Someone who is on effective HIV treatment cannot pass it on to their sexual partner(s). Antiretroviral therapy is used to treat HIV. It doesn’t cure the virus, but over time, it suppresses the amount of HIV in your body (“viral load”) to the point where standard HIV tests can’t detect it. This is called being “undetectable”.

However, if you stop taking your ART medication, your viral load will go back up and you will no longer be undetectable, meaning that HIV could be transmitted to your partners. Taking medication for HIV keeps you healthy and protects your partners.

Useful links for people living with HIV:

www.mesmac.co.uk – more information about HIV and sexual health from your local outreach team.

www.be-resilient.org – resources for people living with HIV to help them build resilience and improve their mental health and wellbeing.

http://i-base.info/u-equals-u-qa/ - FAQs about undetectable=untransmittable.

https://www.tht.org.uk/hiv-and-sexual-health/living-hiv-long-term - information on living with HIV long term

https://www.tht.org.uk/hiv-and-sexual-health/living-well-hiv - information on living well with HIV

https://www.avert.org/living-with-hiv/newly-diagnosed - a resource for people who have been newly diagnosed with HIV

http://positivelyuk.org/ - support and information for people living with HIV. You can also access the helpline on 020 7713 0444.