The struggle for those afflicted with HIV/AIDS in Bali has been recently advanced through the local availability of reduced-cost anti-retroviral (ARV) therapy. The treatment, proven to be effective in prolonging life and sometimes indefinitely delaying the onset of the deadly full-blown stage of the disease, is available to sufferers in Bali at a fraction of the cost similar treatment costs in the West.
HIV/AIDS in Bali
There are an estimated 3,000 people infected with HIV in Bali, primarily among drug users, sex workers and gay men. Recent surveys indicate that the disease has begun to spread beyond these groups, affecting the clients of sex workers and housewives.
Testing and counseling is available through a voluntary, confidential testing (VCT) program and a follow-up outreach programs extended to those engaged in high-risk behavior. To date, some 500 people have utilized the VCT facility, with more than 100 (20%) testing positive for HIV. Counselors provide guidance and support to those afflicted, encouraging behavior change and providing medical, psychological and social support.
ARV treatment can cost upwards of US$ 10,000 per year in the West. Recently, government-to-government programs are making this same treatment available to citizens of developing countries for a fraction of that cost. In Bali, ARV treatment is available for under Rp. 750,000 (approximately US$ 88) per month. These treatments, administered in the early stages of the disease, are allowing HIV sufferers to survive for many years and live productive lives. Without ARV management of the disease, most HIV sufferers succumb quickly to the disease.
The Kerti Praja Foundation
A local charitable foundation, Yayasan Kerti Praja, set up in the early 1990's to reduce the transmission of sexually-transmitted disease has set up a special fund to provide ARV treatment to HIV/AIDS victims. Because of limited resources, of the approximately 100 people requiring ARV treatment only 10 have been funded for a full year's treatment providing medication that must be continued for the rest of their lives.
All donations made to the ARV Fund are transparently handled, with no part of any contribution being used to pay for overheads or administrative costs. 100% of any funds donated for Bali's ARV Fund saves lives and goes to providing medication for HIV sufferers.
Access to treatment is provided without reference to a candidate's religion, profession, education, residence, age, gender or sexual orientation.
Interested to Help?
For more information contact the Yayasan Kerti Praja, Jalan Raya Sesatan 270, Denpasar, Bali or Dr. Wirawan at mobile telephone ++62-(0)811 394306. Or, send an e-mail via the link provided below.
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