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Supporting children living with HIV

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A child living with HIV is likely to face a high level of stigma (eg shame, guilt or isolation), which can have an impact on their well-being.

The child’s family may be dealing with additional complications that managing a long-term health condition presents (eg poverty, caring responsibilities).

However, a pupil living with HIV poses no risk, presents no additional insurance issues and requires no additional resources.

While schools have experience of providing support to children living with many chronic illnesses, the stigma of HIV means that many families are reluctant to disclose the diagnosis and have therefore not notified their school because they fear the consequences. In many cases, the families and children are unable to access the support available to them.

This advice paper provides a framework for schools to ensure a pupil who discloses their HIV diagnosis receives non-judgemental support.

This article is available to NAHT members only.

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