HIV and the lesson it taught: Access to Medicine

Source: PeopleandPlanet.org

Source: PeopleandPlanet.org

‘A,’ ‘I,’ D’ and ‘S’ are merely letters of the alphabet but put them together and it transforms into one of the most intimidating word in the history of mankind. 27 years ago, when the name AIDS came about, this disease was elusive. No scientist, doctor or health care professional could understand the nature of this virus, let alone how it was transmitted. But we powered on, as epidemiologists, scientists and healthcare workers worked hand in hand to not only identify the retrovirus but also to find a possible treatment, one which would improve the quality of life of an AIDS patient by leaps and bounds.

A retrovirus manipulates our immune cells and incorporates itself as part of our body’s defence system. It tricks us and makes us believe that it is one to be trusted. The sheer manipulation of this virus is astonishing as it not only “camouflages” as one of us, but kills our all mighty T cells without which we are defenseless against all infections. Finding a treatment that inhibits a retrovirus is a sheer stroke of genius. Continue reading