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NHS has 'outdated attitude' towards HIV patients

HIV positive patients still have to deal with the stigma associated with the disease.

This is the view of Catherine Murphy, head of parliamentary and public affairs at the Terrence Higgins Trust. Ms Murphy believes that the stigma is particularly acute in the healthcare sector.

She said an assortment of research has been conducted and results show HIV patients still experience discrimination by healthcare workers.

"We do know that still happens quite regularly and that people have poor experiences in the NHS, in primary care," Ms Murphy commented.

She cited the example of dentists telling HIV sufferers that their appointment needs to be the final one of the day so equipment can be sterilised, as well as some dentists rejecting them altogether. According to Ms Murphy, this is a very outdated attitude and people should expect healthcare professionals to know better.

The Terrence Higgins Trust estimated 86,500 people who had HIV were living in the UK in 2009, a 4.2 per cent rise on the previous year.

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NHS has 'outdated attitude' towards HIV patients
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