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Author Topic: Need advise please!  (Read 1440 times)

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Offline Bizkits

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Need advise please!
« on: March 28, 2014, 09:17:49 AM »
I'm pretty sure I know what I need to do, but I'm curious as to hear some more opinions first. So, as many of you already know, I tested poz 3/6/14. I have been taking all the right steps, have had some wonderful support thus far and have been coping fairly well. That is, until yesterday when I hit a bump in the road and had to rehash it all.

I knew it was coming, my doctor told me to expect it, but it hadn't happened and I almost forgot about it. The public health department came to my house. We weren't there so they left a card asking me to "call immediately, we have urgent information regarding your health". I have issue with this alone as it was just stuck in my front door! Anyone could have seen that! So, I called this morning and while the lady (I guess my "assigned case manager") I spoke with was very pleasant, she was not backing down. I told her over and over I had made contact with the necessary people that needed to be informed and that I was already under medical care and receiving treatment. She continued to barrage me and assert her "authority" about giving up the names and contact info of the contacts that could have possibly been exposed, or even been the one that exposed me. She also wanted me to give up all of my partners information?! When I told them it was none of their business, she informed me she was then going to turn my case over to her supervisor and that she would be contacting me. ugh.

Absolutely not. I talked to my partner about this and he was furious, he called the department himself. He, along with a few others have said that though it is their job, they can be nazi's about it...but ultimately one can tell them to cease all contact and they have to. Is that true?

Furthermore, I did neglect to mention one thing which I am really tore up about. The one person who NEEDS to know, our most recent "friend with benefits" will not answer the phone. He won't answer texts, we don't see him out anymore, it's like he fell off the planet. I'm worried that he either is infected (certainly has been exposed) or the one that infected me (without knowing).

So, should I give up his information to the health department since we have not been able to reach him? Or should we keep trying? Also, what should I do about the health department on my back? What moral responsibility do I really have and where do I need to cut it off? Thanks in advance for any advise offered!

-B
« Last Edit: March 28, 2014, 09:20:54 AM by Bizkits »

Offline Jeff G

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2014, 09:25:48 AM »
The states right for contact tracing is something that varies from state to state but in mine its a state law . In my sate they can actually legally force a meeting but that does not mean they can make you give them what they want . If I were you I would just play nice and then its assured they will go away .


Offline AusShep

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2014, 11:57:45 AM »
State law in TX too, it's where I was diagnosed, back here now.  I wouldn't fight them. 

No ethical opinion on what you should do, it's complicated from all sides.

In the old days there were different ways with dealing with it.  Now if you don't want to put anyone on their contact list the easiest thing to say is you met up with a couple of guys off of scruff, grindr, whatever, and don't have any contact info for them.

But if you think the FWB is perhaps in denial and not getting tested and may be acting carelessly you may want to give his info.  If his name pops up a few times they will find him...



Offline 2tcells

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2014, 12:58:54 PM »
They really pissed me off too, they called my parents house looking for me first, then left a note with my full name on it on the sidewalk in front of my house I called them did the interview and told them to stop bothering me and they said I wouldnt see them again, then they were calling me because they wanted to test my kids which I already had there dr do but they want to do there own test. Then I come home and theres a guy waiting in a car near my house that looks out if place so I pull in my garage and they walk up to me in my garage harrasing me again so I went off on him and told them not to come back when he saw I had my gun on my hip he looked scared and backed off.
7-4-13 diagnosed cd4- 2      vl-220,600
8-3-13                     cd4- 4      vl- 448
9-3-13                     cd4- 40    vl- ud
11-3-13                   cd4- 54    vl-ud
1-9-14                     cd4- 62    vl- 43
4-3-14                     cd4- 110  vl-ud yay!
8-5-14                     cd4- 95    vl-ud boo

Offline Theyer

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2014, 01:17:59 PM »
I had no idea this occurred , such extreme stress I am very sorry this has to be endured , is it the same for HEP ? And have they not heard off envelopes , How on earth does this encourage people to get tested ?
"If we can find the money to kill people, we can find the money to help people ."  Tony Benn

Offline AusShep

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2014, 01:40:51 PM »
I had no idea this occurred , such extreme stress I am very sorry this has to be endured , is it the same for HEP ? And have they not heard off envelopes , How on earth does this encourage people to get tested ?

It used to be worse.  That, and a few disclosures of the early HIV lists in a couple of places were among the stupid reasons I put off treatment longer than I should have.  There are lots of reportable conditions.  I know they interview for HIV and Syphilis.  Did not interview for Hep B, not sure about C.

Quote
Texas:
Physicians or other healthcare providers who diagnose or treat a sexually transmitted disease are required to report it within seven calendar days of the determination of the existence of the reportable STD. The STD-27 report form should be completed and submitted to the local reporting authority for the following:

All chancroid, Chlamydia trachomatis, gonorrhea and syphilis infections
All congenital syphilis infections
Positive point of care tests for STDs (including HIV), for adults, adolescents and HIV-exposed infants

Offline Jeff G

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2014, 01:48:36 PM »
You could always find out from the internet the name of the health department workers children and then turn in their names as a contact . Yeah ... I'm down right mean sometime . 

Offline Bizkits

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2014, 04:21:07 PM »
Thanks guys,

    I decided to play nice to an extent. I did release the information of our friend who we can't reach so that they are able to make some effort. I feel guilty in a way for "turning him in", but he needs to know and get tested. We've tried to reach him to exhaustion; It's someone elses turn.

     I reluctantly agreed to the "full interview", answered the slew of extremely invasive and personal questions and quite frankly was as brutally honest as I could be. Somehow though,  I still felt like I was halfway between kindergarten being scolded by the principal for the first time ever and talking to a shrink.

    She said she still would like to visit with me at my home for 10-15 minutes. After all that? Bitch are you serious?! I can see why people are afraid to go to y'all for testing and help. Aye...let's just hope it's over with sooner rather than later so I can build a road and move on.
     

   

Offline Theyer

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2014, 04:59:38 PM »
Good for you, after some time has passed and if you feel it will not cost you too much it could be an opportunity to clearly tell her what it was like to have this gross invasion. Oh and buy them a pack off envelopes , saying its a donation to enable humane practice.

Enjoy your weekend , you have earn it.
"If we can find the money to kill people, we can find the money to help people ."  Tony Benn

Offline absopozilutely

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #9 on: March 28, 2014, 07:28:31 PM »
Where are you located? In CA they told me no one would come to my house or anything.
12/18 Infected
2/4 12:22pm tested POZ via ORAquick
2/19 WB Confirmation
2/4-2/19 VL 104,678 CD4 407
3/2 Genotype back, and Started Complera
4/2-CD4 688 38% and VL 1,600
5/1-CD4 592 42% and VL 336
5/22-CD4 732 31% and VL 109 :( STILL NOT UD!
5/31 Switched to Stribild :( I'll miss you Complera!
6/19 CD4 508 35% and VL UD!!!!! Crying at work like a baby.
9/19 CD4 799 46% VL UD yayyyy

Offline tednlou2

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #10 on: March 29, 2014, 12:03:56 AM »
I'm glad I never got that visit.  My HIV doc office did send me a letter about a staff change, and the envelope had, "Department of Infectious Disease."  That did upset me.  It is not uncommon for the mailman to give my mail to neighbors or vice-versa. 

You could say you had an anonymous encounter and you have no idea what his name is or how to contact him.  Of course, that would be lying, but it may get them to back off.  This would be a hard decision for me.  Do I give the name over, so they will then be knocking on his door and leaving notes, which may piss him off and create issues for him?  Or, if I have a name, then I could do just as good a job trying to contact him.  But, you are having problems with that.  Are you sure the number you are calling is his and still active, but he's just ignoring you?  He may have tested poz and is worried you are calling to blame him, so he ignores you.  What do you say when contacting him?

Have any studies been done on whether this helps or hurts?  Does it really lead to more being found and tested, or does it create another reason people don't want to get tested.  How many of these investigations actually lead to getting someone infected tested vs causing someone infected to not want to test?  I have a feeling no study exists. 


Offline Ann

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #11 on: March 29, 2014, 04:52:53 AM »
Ted, did you read the whole thread or just the first post? Please go read reply #7 if nothing else. He has already met with them and named the guy.


I was a "named contact" - and I'm thankful I was, otherwise I don't know how many more years I would have gone without knowing. It was nearly four as it was. (Hindsight is a wonderful thing!)

I got a letter in a nondescript envelope in the post saying I needed to go in to the GUM clinic because they needed to speak to me and possibly run some tests. I rang them up demanding to know why and they wouldn't tell me over the phone - but offered to send (and pay for) a taxi because they wanted me in before noon. (so the labs could be run and ready the next day.)

When my diagnosis was confirmed, they asked me about any sexual partners who might need to get tested. It was done right there at the clinic. I knew it would be confidential as they would not tell me who named me, although he eventually told me himself. (Once he knew I wasn't going to rip his head off!) I pretty much knew it was him anyway.

It turned out that I was diagnosed as a part of what epidemiologists call a "cluster". (Gives a whole new meaning to the term "cluster fuck", and always makes me feel like a grape.)

One person who had been named (don't know by who) did have a bit of an unpleasant experience with them. He refused to go in for testing so they went to where he worked and talked him into giving a blood sample there and then. He was working on his own on a farm, but it was still kinda dodgy that they tracked him down to where he worked. He tested negative.


I can't believe that anyone (in government) thinks that allowing the health department to harass and potentially "out" a newly diagnosed person is a good idea and will encourage others to get tested. FFS! Why can't this all be done through the doctor or clinic like it is here? Hell, it was difficult enough doing it that way!

People are much more likely to be cooperative if they're not being hounded at home and made to feel unsafe. As someone else said, it should be illegal. This is another one of those laws, like the criminalisation of hiv, that needs to be seriously looked at and fixed.

I'm all for confidential contact naming, but this is NOT the way to go about it!

Biz, I hope this is an end to it for you now. I hope that other guy gets tested - or maybe like Ted said, maybe he's been ignoring your calls because he did recently test poz and he's terrified you want to blame/prosecute him. (those fucking laws again!)
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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Bizkits

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #12 on: March 29, 2014, 12:08:49 PM »
Well, you all bring up pretty good points. I had made it a habit to get tested regularly, every 3 months. So, when I tested poz, it wasn't from a notification from the Health Dept. but rather just a routine test for me. My primary care provider delivered the news, I was referred to ID that same day and quite literally had an appointment the next day. I have however gotten two "calls" in my life where I was named as a contact. They don't make you get tested there, but they want to know where you get tested and when. The last time it happened, they called my doctors office to make sure I had. They can't force anyone to get tested either but it's even rougher if you don't. It's never a pleasant feeling. Once you're diagnosed/confirmed here, though it's the law the doctor has to report it to the public health department. I truly get that in theory, they're just trying to ensure testing, treatment and prevention to all the parties involved. Their tactics, however are a bit aggressive and archaic.

As for our friend, I have my own theories. We went out on the town last night for a bit and happened to see him. He actually walked right by us and completely ignored us. So, in my mind anyway, something is up. Maybe he's tested poz and he blames me for it or is afraid I'll blame him. Maybe he tested neg but is upset he was exposed. Maybe he had another encounter in which hiv played a role and he doesn't know about me. Maybe he has been informed and hasn't been tested. Maybe the health department already got to him too. I'm afraid I'll never know. We did everything we knew to do though to reach and inform him ourselves. Oh, and I am in TX, Absopozilutely. CA seems to be a bit more progressive and liberal in y'alls laws. 

I have no clue what studies, if any have been conducted on the effectiveness of methods and efforts to get people to get tested and treated, at least through the health department. We have a ton of ASO's around, though. Many non-profits as well which support them. They come to different areas of town with mobile testing and also set up booths at local bars and nightclubs and events. They provide information, counselors and even private testing booths to have it done right there and then. They are a lot more friendly, caring, supportive and encouraging than the health department could ever hope to be. Their main goal is mostly to educate and to make sure people KNOW their status, poz or neg...with no judgement.

There's another thread going on about someone wanting to sue someone for not disclosing their status and afterwards becoming infected. I first off don't think this is the case at all here. I had tested neg just 3 short months before this one. Just like always. I "knew" I was neg. Turns out I wasn't. That's how this case happened. He "knew" he was neg, I hope he is. Plus, we were both consenting adults that engaged in unprotected sex. There would be no legal grounds on either of our parts. The only time that I could think of where a lawsuit may be appropriate would be if someone poz knowingly lied and deceived someone resulting in a positive transmission. As despicable as that is, that would open up another whole Pandora's box, though on the whole community.

So, just have to keep moving forward. Hope everyone is off to a good weekend!

Offline BT65

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #13 on: March 29, 2014, 01:39:30 PM »
Here in Hoosierville, at the ASO I worked at, when we had a new intake, we would ask if they would like to name partners, which would be told and the intake would remain anonymous, or if they would like to meet with the Infectious Disease contact from one of the local clinics, who would assist them with this.  There was also a website, I wish I could remember, where a person could send an anonymous card to previous sex partners. 

It's the law.  Of course people can always lie and say the don't know the names of past sex partners, or that they already informed them.  When I tested positive, I never was asked to name previous sex partners, nor had to meet with the health department.  Though I believe my name was given to them, and thus the State of Indiana, I never had to meet with anyone.

When we had an intake and could not get documentation of their positive status, we would contact Indiana State Department of Health.  They were always able to get it, no matter where the person came from.
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline mecch

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #14 on: March 30, 2014, 01:16:12 PM »
Bizkits, you did the right things.  Trying to contact that dude. Resisting the health officers when they went into places that made you uncomfortable and where they have no legal bind on you.
Probably as you say, you won't solve the mystery of the guy who stopped talking.  You did your bit. Now move on.

I wanted to comment as an aside to this comment you made:
"Plus, we were both consenting adults that engaged in unprotected sex. There would be no legal grounds on either of our parts. The only time that I could think of where a lawsuit may be appropriate would be if someone poz knowingly lied and deceived someone resulting in a positive transmission. As despicable as that is, that would open up another whole Pandora's box, though on the whole community."

Unfortunately what makes sense to our own logic and morality is not the same as the laws.  The only way a person can know what stupid laws might govern their sex lives is to read the laws that apply where they are having the sex.
You'd be surprised to how bizarre, BYZANTINE, medieval, the laws about risk and transmission are.  In some places, people can go to prison when there is NO transmission, and technically no risk of transmission. 

So nobody should assume because he/she is an upstanding, thinking, moral adult, that their sexual practices are safe from bad HIV laws... 
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline Theyer

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2014, 05:24:19 PM »
I can understandstand that its uncomfortable with how things are with the guy who   walks on by but you did all you could In fact you went the extra mile, tis sad he cannot deal with it in a stronger manner.
"If we can find the money to kill people, we can find the money to help people ."  Tony Benn

Offline Ann

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2014, 05:22:19 AM »

Unfortunately what makes sense to our own logic and morality is not the same as the laws.  The only way a person can know what stupid laws might govern their sex lives is to read the laws that apply where they are having the sex.
You'd be surprised to how bizarre, BYZANTINE, medieval, the laws about risk and transmission are.  In some places, people can go to prison when there is NO transmission, and technically no risk of transmission. 


^^This.

There are people rotting in US prisons because they committed the "crime" of spitting on someone while hiv positive. A "crime" that carries absolutely ZERO risk of transmission.

Spitting on someone is nasty and maybe warrants a slap on the wrist, but imprisonment? For alleged possible hiv transmission? In la-la land maybe, not in the real world. Yet there are laws on the books that put people away for years for spitting while poz.

Everyone needs to know the hiv laws where they live and where they have sex - they vary from state to state and from country to country. The laws may be illogical and often even downright immoral, but that won't stop them from putting you in prison if you fall foul of them and someone decides it's a good idea to press charges.

Some states will put you away for non-disclosure and they don't care that a condom was used or that you only engaged in oral and/or there was no transmission. They can and will still put you away.

Food for thought:

http://www.hivlawandpolicy.org/issues/criminal-law

http://www.poz.com/criminalization.shtml

http://www.hivjustice.net/ (read the associated pre-2012 blog archives at http://criminalhivtransmission.blogspot.com/ )

For laws pertaining to the UK:
http://www.aidsmap.com/law



edited to fix broken linky
« Last Edit: March 31, 2014, 05:27:32 AM by Ann »
Condoms are a girl's best friend

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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline Bizkits

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2014, 10:18:00 AM »
^^"Food for thought" ^^

OMG. I hadn't yet started looking into any of that yet but I'm glad you brought it up. I've been reading up on it for the last little bit and I am just in shock! (And I've barely even chipped the ice) So, Texas abolished/deleted it's hiv transmission statute in 1994 and so there is not one anymore. However, on a case-by-case basis, you can be prosecuted under general criminal law in which crimes are charged as felonies. Some of these case studies are insane!

"The Court of Appeals of Texas has found that the seminal fluid of an HIV-positive man is a deadly weapon for the purposes of conviction under the aggravated assault statute,1022 and numerous prosecutions in Texas have led to the incarceration of individuals whose alleged criminal conduct presented no known risk of transmitting HIV.10231017"

It appears the majority of cases prosecuted now-a-days are mostly non-disclosure types of scenarios but there are a few that aren't. They do, however appear to have something to do with *who* was involved (ie: cops, security guards, etc...).

•In May 2013, a 25-year-old HIV-positive man was charged with aggravated assault after spitting on two police officers.1051

• An HIV-positive woman spit in the face of a prison guard and was convicted of attempted capital murder and sentenced to twenty-five years imprisonment.1052

• A 26-year-old HIV-positive man was charged with aggravated assault after he bit a security guard during a struggle in May 2008.1053 Because of his HIV-positive status, the jury considered his saliva a “deadly weapon.”1054

• In 2005, an HIV-positive man’s twenty-five year sentence for biting a police officer was upheld by the Court of Appeals of Texas.1055 could be transmitted via the saliva in a bite and the court affirmed the conviction based in
part on the nurse’s testimony.1056

This is worse than saying you can send someone to jail for not washing their hands after they've pissed and then stick their hand in the communal bowl of nuts and popcorn at the local bar.

Offline Bizkits

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Re: Need advise please!
« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2014, 12:22:33 PM »
Here's some other interesting reading, Texas's health and safety codes including hiv. Looks like we are covered/protected in a few arenas. Glad to see that.

http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/HS/htm/HS.85.htm

 


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