Terminologies: To use or not to use


For a better understanding of the different terminologies used in the HIV response, you might want to review the attached pdf file.


Also, it’s worthwhile mentioning the following terms NOT recommended for use:

  1. The expression HIV/AIDS should be avoided whenever possible because it can cause confusion. Most people with HIV do not have AIDS. The expression HIV/AIDS prevention is even more unacceptable because HIV prevention entails correct and consistent condom use, use of sterile injecting equipment, changes in social norms and so on, whereas AIDS prevention entails antiretroviral therapy, cotrimoxazole, good nutrition, isoniazid prophylaxis (INH), etc. It is preferable to use the term that is most specific and appropriate in the context.

  2. With reference to people living with HIV, it is preferable to avoid certain terms. For instance, AIDS patient should only be used in a medical context (most of the time a person with AIDS is not in the role of patient). These terms imply that the individual in question is powerless, with no control over his or her life. Referring to people living with HIV as innocent victims (which often is used to describe HIV-positive children or people who have acquired HIV medically) wrongly implies that people who acquire HIV in other ways are somehow deserving of punishment. People should never be referred to as an abbreviation, such as PLHIV, since this is dehumanizing. Instead, the name or identity of the group should be written out in full. Abbreviations for population groups can, however, be used in charts or graphs where brevity is required.

  3. Words like “fight” or “battle” and other combatant language:  Avoid such terms unless in a direct quotation or because of the specific context of the text. One rationale for this is to avoid transference from the fight against HIV to a fight against people living with HIV.

Source:  http://www.unaids.org/en/resources/documents/2015/2015_terminology_guidelines

For more information, please visit us at https://www.facebook.com/HASH-HIV-AIDS-Support-House-Inc-628563940573037/?fref=ts  or email us at hashcommunityoperations@gmail.com


About +daddy+drEw+

HIV awareness and treatment Advocate & Activist. Living with HIV since 2007. A friend. A partner. A dad to the HIV Community.
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