Monday, 14 March 2011

An email


can u tell me how much is monthly expenses to cure hiv.


The above note arrived in our inbox this morning. I have of course changed the name to protect confidentiality (and doctored the above image of my inbox as well).

The note seemed to be written by someone who had checked out our simple JSK site
This is what I replied:
Dear Jagdish,

Thank you for your question.

There is still no complete 'cure' for HIV - but there are medications that control the amount of virus in the body for many many years - which allows a person with HIV to live a normal life.

These medications are available free from the government at the ART clinics.

From private doctors it will cost about Rs. 1200 - 4000 depending on the
kinds of medications prescribed.

Please feel free to visit Jeevan Sahara Kendra if you have any questions.


Andi Eicher

JSK Director

Would Jagdish call me?

At 3.15 PM he did.

I was riding the scooter when he called. I told him that I would give him a call when I got back to the office. I did.

Jagdish is HIV positive. His wife is too. They live in 2 suburbs away in Mumbai. Jagdish wants to be treated - and has gone to various hospitals for treatment. He does not want his wife to know about their condition - because he says she is illiterate and gets upset / tension very easily. From what I could understand in our first conversation, Jagdish went to a hospital in the Mumbai's Western Suburbs and spent Rs. 40,000 on injections to try and cure him of the disease. Apparently his wife was with him too. His wife has said that she will not go to any hospitals anymore.

Its complicated.

Just in the phone call it is clear that it is complicated. Jagdish wanted to know whether we will treat his wife without telling her what she has. I told him that we work on the principal of telling the truth. We do not break a person's confidentiality. But we encourage a person to share what is really going on with their spouse and loved ones.

I suggested that Jagdish come and meet Dr. Sheba along with all his reports and medications that he is taking at this point. I assured him that we would not disclose his status to anyone else without his permission.

Jagdish should be there at 11 AM tomorrow.

Another opportunity for a real change.


  1. Thanks, and God Bless u Andi...did Jagdish turn up?

  2. Yes Sao, Jagdish did. I will write about his story in a few days. It has been an amazing week for us with Jagdish and his wife!