According to UNAIDS, in many communities, the stigma of being HIV+ and the subsequent discrimination can be as devastating as the illness itself – social ostracism, job loss, school expulsion and violence. The fear of stigmatization can prevent individuals from testing for HIV, seeking treatment and disclosing their status.
To break this cycle, Connie in “The Lazarus Effect” film, points to the power of support groups and to speaking freely about your status.
Access to treatment is also critical in dealing with stigma. Medicine leads to results and gives people hope and encouragement that the disease is not a death sentence.