Medication used to treat HIV is commonly called treatment. Or antiretrovirals (ARVs), antiretroviral therapy (ART), combination antitretroviral therapy (cART), highly active antitretroviral therapy (HAART) or meds.
The aim of HIV treatment is to reduce the amount of HIV in your blood to undetectable levels, and to maintain those undetectable levels. Controlling HIV in this way with treatment allows your immune system to return to optimal functioning.
HIV treatment has advanced considerably in recent years giving people with HIV have more advanced treatment options than ever. In Australia, today, HIV is no longer a terminal illness and is instead now considered a chronic manageable health condition.
Many experts believe that with access to care and the timely commencement of HIV treatment, someone diagnosed with HIV today can expect to enjoy good health and a normal life expectancy.
Recent years have given more insights into a wider range of benefits of HIV treatment including early treatment, Treatment as Prevention (TasP) and a number of individual health benefits of HIV treatment.
NAPWHA’s continued work in HIV treatment
The National Association of People with HIV Australia (NAPWHA) asserts that all people with HIV deserve the highest possible standard of care and treatment. NAPWHA works with pharmaceutical companies, educators, clinicians and government to ensure that people living with HIV in Australia have access to the best treatments and information possible.
The NAPWHA Treataware Project actively represents the interests of PLHIV in many ways including the development of educational materials, facilitation of the Treataware Outreach Network (TON) and hosting the popular Treatments Information Roadshows and Chin Wag events throughout Australia.