BC Women’s celebrates 20 years of no HIV transmission from mother in treatment to baby.

December 1 2017
For World AIDS Day, BC Women’s Oak Tree Clinic looks back at the past twenty years in BC, where no mother with HIV fully treated by Oak Tree’s drug regimen has given birth to an HIV+ baby.

When Oak Tree first opened, the transmission rate was 22%. Reaching less than 1% is a major accomplishment, due to tireless efforts in research and medical advancements across BC.

BC Women’s Oak Tree Clinic provides inter-professional HIV care for women, infants, and youth. Specialists work closely with the BC Centre for Disease Control for surveillance, and with the BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS for drug therapy and overall provincial coordination.

Unique to BC Women’s, the Oak Tree Clinic oversees the only women-exclusive peer support groups in BC. The value of these ‘for women, by women’ groups is immeasurable, building relationships of mutual support and reducing isolation.

Youth are the fastest growing population living with HIV in BC. Specialists at BC Women’s recognize that countering stigma contributes to better medication adherence. For the past two years, they’ve worked with the community organization YouthCO to develop the Positive Youth Project.

This harm-reduction program combines routine medical clinic visits to Oak Tree with education, recreation, mentorship activities, and an online networking portal that has reached an estimated 500 + youth living with HIV/AIDS across Canada.

Socially connected healthy lives with HIV, rather than defined by HIV.

The stigma and discrimination towards those living with HIV/AIDS is very real and can be very isolating. This World AIDS Day, BC Women’s encourages everyone across BC to join the conversation and promote healthier outcomes for people of all ages living with HIV.