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The Importance of Care

 

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The word care can mean many things. At Maison de Naissance, it means that women receive counseling, education, medicines, lab tests, and loving attention every day, from expertly trained and dedicated members of our staff. It means that these elements of caring are provided without charge, and without discrimination, to all women who come to us. This is particularly important for women with HIV.

In Haiti, there is a stigma attached to having a positive test for HIV, and it can be difficult for a woman to accept this news. The counseling that accompanies this testing sets the stage for our mothers to understand that there is hope. They can receive medications to help keep their virus under control and prevent their baby from becoming infected. Collaboration with the PEPFAR program in Haiti helps provide medication and the staff necessary to expertly complete the record keeping that insures all of our patients are tested, all of the positive patients are treated, and all of the HIV positive mothers are given medicine in labor to keep their babies safe.

It’s just one element of the care received at MN, but it’s a vital part of Berneice’s story. Berneice’s husband was HIV positive when they met and married, but he did not share this news with her. When she became pregnant right away, she was thrilled and went to Maison de Naissance for an early prenatal visit. She was devastated to learn that she tested positive for the virus, having had no other partners besides her husband. She felt very alone- never having known anyone who survived with HIV. After several visits to MN, she began connecting with the Mothers’ Club and met other women living with HIV and their healthy babies. Berneice was able to complete her course of daily medication, keep her nutrition up, pull herself out of depression, and deliver a healthy baby boy with the help of MN. Your donations kept our doors open and the lights on so that together we could save Berneice’s life, and the life of her son.

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