Though undetected HIV disease remains life-threatening, advances in medical treatment and diagnostic care are transforming the disease into a chronic manageable condition. With five separate classes of antiviral drugs, using three or more different antivirals in combination has become standard of care. CD4 (T-cell) and viral load testing are used to monitor disease progression. Side-effects, the safety and efficacy of antiviral treatment, as well as the effects of HIV infection itself in persons who have had the disease for many years, remain primary concerns. While treatment often presents significant challenges for newly infected persons and persons with a history of taking antiviral drugs, especially for persons with multiple challenges such as active substance use and/or mental health issues, the long-term management of HIV disease has never looked more promising.
Like other people, people with HIV may have practical, emotional, and spiritual needs. San Francisco has a wide variety of organizations that can assist people with HIV to find additional information, orientation and referrals. The following phone-lines can assist you to locate and access San Francisco’s broad array of services for HIV positive persons.
San Francisco AIDS Foundation: California HIV/AIDS Hotline
(415) 434-AIDS (In San Francisco)
(800) 628-9240 (Nationwide)