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Author Topic: Anyone been to Taiwan?  (Read 1058 times)

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Offline Tempeboy

  • Member
  • Posts: 344
  • Like St Francis of Assisi I am wedded to Poverty
Anyone been to Taiwan?
« on: April 12, 2010, 03:28:58 AM »
Hey all,

Friend is going to Taiwan and needs to carry meds.  She has found conflicting information on the web etc.

Is anyone familiar with local restrictions and how to manage them?

cheers
Roughly roundabout somewhere in the eighteenth or nineteenth century, Sodomite begat Homosexual out of moral, medical and legal models, bequeathing him Identity, who inbred with Nuclear Family and Industrialism to spawn Homophobia.

Dean Kiley

Offline Nestor

  • Member
  • Posts: 430
  • What we love, we shall grow to resemble.
Re: Anyone been to Taiwan?
« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2010, 06:52:52 AM »

Taiwan is the country that I was living in when I found out I had HIV.  My visa was revoked and I was given a week to leave the country.  I would not be eligible to get a work or study visa there now.  However, I was told by someone--not an authoritative person--that simply entering the country on an arrival "visa" would not be a problem.  Taiwan is not in the list of countries that--like the U.S. until recently--forbids HIVers from even setting foot on the soil; they simply don't give visas. 

That being said, I had an HIV+ friend visit me here with medicines in his bag several years ago.  His bag was not searched and nothing happened, but he was really afraid before he came here. 
Summer 2004--became HIV+
Dec. 2005--found out

Date          CD4    %       VL
Jan. '06    725    25      9,097
Nov. '06    671    34     52,202
Apr. '07    553    30      24,270
Sept. '07  685    27       4,849
Jan. '08    825    29       4,749
Mar. '08    751    30     16,026
Aug. '08    653    30       3,108
Oct. '08     819    28     10,046
Jan '09      547    31     13,000
May '09     645   25        6,478
Aug. '09    688   30      19,571
Nov. '09     641    27       9,598
Feb. '10     638    27       4,480
May '10      687      9    799,000 (CMV)
July '10      600     21      31,000
Nov '10      682     24     15,000
June '11     563    23     210,000 (blasto)
July  '11      530    22      39,000
Aug '11      677     22      21,000
Sept. '12    747     15      14,000

Offline komnaes

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,893
Re: Anyone been to Taiwan?
« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2010, 07:11:02 AM »
The situation in Taiwan is somewhat confusing. If the visit is less than 30 days (or for some countries 3 months) one can enter as a visitor and depending on your friend's nationality s/he may or may not have to apply for a visitor visa. But in both cases there's no need to make any declaration nor the authority will ask for such information.

If your friend is planning to stay over 3 months, a work permit or other types of none-prominent residency are required; in that case a health test will be required before the visa will be issued and application from anyone who's tested HIV+ will be rejected.

The confusing part is that one law does give the government the authority to deport anyone who's found to be HIV+ during their permitted period of stay, which even though it seems only apply to those staying over 3 months, in theory it can also cover tourists/visitors staying less than 3 month. It should be noted that Taiwan is a continental legal system - meaning if its laws do not explicitly state that something is legal, it's implied that it's not legal (other way round for common law systems), and it's never explicitly stated that HIV+ tourists/visitors are permitted.

The practical advise I have received in the past is that if one is staying as a visitor, HIV is not issue and so is bringing in meds. It can become problematic if one needs urgent medical attention during the stay or, worst, one is caught with some legal troubles like being found to be criminally transmitting HIV (yes, it's a crime in Taiwan).

I will ask around as it's something that I am interested to know as well.. but as for all intents and purposes, I think your friend should not worry too much.
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline komnaes

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,893
Re: Anyone been to Taiwan?
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2010, 07:42:05 AM »
Taiwan is the country that I was living in when I found out I had HIV.  My visa was revoked and I was given a week to leave the country. 

So sorry to hear about your case Nestor (though you might have mentioned it in the past).. I just looked it up and it seems there are so far 278 such deportation cases, and among them include a lot of spouses of Taiwanese (56) that were forced to leave before they obtained prominent residency. It also seems that if one has a record of deportation his/her case will also be filed with the immigration authority in order that person from entering again. However, again, very confusingly, it does not mention whether such restriction applies to just re-application for a work permit/non-prominent residency or simply entering Taiwan again as a tourist.
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline joemutt

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,035
Re: Anyone been to Taiwan?
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2010, 11:03:16 AM »
I received a visa on arrival for 30 days, no customs inspection on my way in or out, I had my meds with me.
Sorry to hear about your hardships there, Nestor.

Offline Nestor

  • Member
  • Posts: 430
  • What we love, we shall grow to resemble.
Re: Anyone been to Taiwan?
« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2010, 06:30:36 PM »

Thanks for the kind words!

It also seems that if one has a record of deportation his/her case will also be filed with the immigration authority in order that person from entering again. However, again, very confusingly, it does not mention whether such restriction applies to just re-application for a work permit/non-prominent residency or simply entering Taiwan again as a tourist.

That is what I'm afraid of, and the worst of it is that I will really have no way of knowing without simply flying and seeing what happens at the airport.  I'm just praying that this nightmare ends sometime in my life and when I would still be healthy enough to enjoy travelling again. The whole thing is still extremely difficult for me to deal with or talk about. 

But if Tempeboy's friend is going only as a short-term tourist, the risks seem minimal.  First, I don't even think mere presence in the country is illegal--merely being granted a visa is.  Secondly, even if it is, as it was in the U.S. until recently, think about what would be necessary.  Your friend would have to be among the few who actually get their bags searched.  I've flown dozens of times in my life and only ever gotten my bags searched once.  Second, when they see prescription medicine, they have to care enough to examine it and see what it is and know or find out what it is for.  Since I assume many Americans carry prescription medicines with them--I always laugh at the way I, with HIV, am the only one I know who does NOT have an array of little translucent orange bottles somewhere in my home--I wonder how much they would even care.  Then, finally, they would have to decide that refusing the person entry was worth doing.  A lot of ifs.  As I said, it reminds me of a time when a poz friend was visiting me from Canada.  He spent weeks agonizing about whether customs would recognize his meds and detain him, but finally nothing happened, and I don't think he was unique. 
Summer 2004--became HIV+
Dec. 2005--found out

Date          CD4    %       VL
Jan. '06    725    25      9,097
Nov. '06    671    34     52,202
Apr. '07    553    30      24,270
Sept. '07  685    27       4,849
Jan. '08    825    29       4,749
Mar. '08    751    30     16,026
Aug. '08    653    30       3,108
Oct. '08     819    28     10,046
Jan '09      547    31     13,000
May '09     645   25        6,478
Aug. '09    688   30      19,571
Nov. '09     641    27       9,598
Feb. '10     638    27       4,480
May '10      687      9    799,000 (CMV)
July '10      600     21      31,000
Nov '10      682     24     15,000
June '11     563    23     210,000 (blasto)
July  '11      530    22      39,000
Aug '11      677     22      21,000
Sept. '12    747     15      14,000

 


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