Thursday, April 17, 2008

Uncomfortable Conversation

A friend asked, "How's your work this month"
"Good, I'm doing HIV clinics three times a week"
"HIV? like AIDS?"
"Watch out"
"Watch out from what?"
He looked me like I was an idiot, "Watch out from the HIV"
"Why should I watch out?"
"Well, watch out, it's HIV, it's AIDS"
"But why should I watch out? I don't sleep with my patients in the clinic"
"I know idiot, but just watch out, it's AIDS"
"I don't inject drugs with them either"
"I know I know, but just watch out"
"From what?"
"Listen, I'm no scientist (obviously), but you gotta watch out, or I have to start watching out from you"
Since January 1st, 2008, twenty-two new cases of HIV were diagnosed in Jordan.
Public knowledge about HIV among Jordanians, especially the "well-educated": Zero, and declining.


Anonymous said...


22? Wow, I really hope they do something about it soon. Ignorance is a disease.

Anonymous said...

Wow, this is scary. We just watched an old HBO film about the initial research abut AIDS before it even had a name. Hubby did AIDS research in a biotech lab in the 80s.

With the amount of, ahem, interesting sex going on in West Amman, this could really be huge a problem. But of course, we know it is all foreigners bringing it in, or Jordanians who got bad blood transfusions in other countries. No worries.

The Observer said...

Watch out of ignorance :P

Anonymous said...

Well Hareega, I have to admit that I would have said the same (watch out). and I admit also that it just scares the hell out of me to hear this word. I think it is normal in the taboo community to have this little information about HIV, which is related to having sex.
not-very-related: i wish they start some sex education in Jordan schools.

No_Angel said...

hareega where did you find that statistic ?

Anonymous said...

agreeing with everyone, but common, you think sex education in school would be allowed? that would educate our young ammanis and put naughty ideas into their head!:P

Anonymous said...

Well it will also teach them to use a condom instead of throwing kids in the garbage. 100 safe naughty actions is better than one baby in the garbage :)

Hareega said...

the statistics i got were from Al-Rai newspaper, yesterday's paper

Kinzi, we're blaming it all on foreigners. The major problem now is that about 30% of those who have HIV in the US do not know it, and that's in a country where health care workers always look for HIV and have a high index os suspicion, so how about Jordan where most physicians and nurses have never seen a patient who's HIV+? 22 cases were diagnosed, probably there are 22 that are not diagnosed yet.

md.. if there's something you should be scared more of it's hepatitis B and hepatitis C. These infections have almost no effective therapy in Jordan (they do, but it's cumbersome, long (months), and often doesn't work) and often lead to liver failure and death. A large percentage of Jordanian have these infections and the methods of transmission are very similar to HIV. Have you got the haptitis B vaccine?