Veterans Day originated as “Armistice Day” on Nov. 11, 1919, the first anniversary of the end of World War I. Congress passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance, and Nov. 11 became a national holiday beginning in 1938. Veterans Day is not to be confused with Memorial Day–a common misunderstanding, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Memorial Day (the fourth Monday in May) honors American service members who died in service to their country or as a result of injuries incurred during battle, while Veterans Day pays tribute to all American veterans–living or dead–but especially gives thanks to living veterans who served their country honorably during war or peacetime.
Halloween is just around the corner! As we all gathered, talks of ghost stories, and entertaining ourselves with Michael Jacksons Thriller video; we kept the age old tradition of carving Jack O’ Lanterns. Things got messy but we ended up with some great looking pumpkins to put along the walkway here at Bettendorf Place and also some pumpkin seeds to bake for later. Yum.
According to Health Daily News almost half of American adults infected with HIV don’t take medications that can prevent them from developing AIDS, a new government report shows. Adhering to taking your HIV medication properly is important. If you don’t this can mean that HIV has a chance to change and become resistant to the anti-HIV drugs you are taking. It might also mean that your HIV becomes resistant to anti-HIV drugs similar to the ones you are taking.
Taking your HIV drugs properly means:
- Taking all the doses of your drugs. If you miss doses, this gives HIV a chance to become resistant.
- Taking your doses at the right time. If you take your medicine too early or too late it can be as bad as missing doses completely.
- Making sure you take your medicines in the right way. Some medicines need to be taken with food for them to work, but others need to be taken on an empty stomach. If you take your pills in the wrong way it can mean that you don’t absorb enough of them to fight HIV, risking resistance.
- Making sure you don’t take other drugs or medicines that interfere with your body’s ability to process your HIV treatment. Always tell your HIV doctor about any other medicines you are taking. It’s also a good idea to tell your doctor about any recreational drugs you are taking
So, given this information I researched ways to help individuals take their medications. I stumbled upon this app called iDiary Meds.
The iDiary is a useful tool to help remind you to take your medicine on time. Once activated and set, a gentle reminder will be sent to you when it’s time to take your medication. You will be reminded of the drug and dosage on the days, and at the time you need to take them. You can add multiple medications and once you come off them you can archive them.
The app also has a reminder facility for your next hospital appointment. Put in your details and you will be reminded 24 hours before the appointment, then again 3 hours before and at the actual time.
We know that sometimes you might want to keep your medication a secret, so the reminder message is very discreet and there is also a pin code facility to ensure only you can activate the app.
Jesus came to earth,
To show us how to live,
How to put others first,
How to love and how to give.
Then He set about His work,
That God sent Him to do;
He took our punishment on Himself;
He made us clean and new.
He could have saved Himself,
Calling angels from above,
But He chose to pay our price for sin;
He paid it out of love.
Our Lord died on Good Friday,
But the cross did not destroy
His resurrection on Easter morn
That fills our hearts with joy.
Now we know our earthly death,
Like His, is just a rest.
We’ll be forever with Him
In heaven, where life is best.
So we live our lives for Jesus,
Think of Him in all we do.
Thank you Savior; Thank you Lord.
Help us love like you!
Earlier this morning our executive director Cheryl Potts made an appearance on WRNW1, Women’s Radio Network. Lisa Singer interviewed Cheryl about the work we do at Alexian Brothers Housing and Health Alliance and what drew her to the organization. Cheryl said that she committed to working in the HIV community many years ago because it struck her as the “biggest social justice issue of our time.”
Lisa asked Cheryl about the challenges facing this community today. “We’re still seeing a lot of stigma and discrimination towards people who are HIV-positive,” Cheryl observed. This is a particularly big problem because it also stops people from seeking treatment. Though having HIV doesn’t need to substantially reduce life expectancy, it will if stigma keeps people from seeing a doctor and starting medication.
Another obstacle Cheryl spoke about was misinformation. “While there’s a lot of information out there, there’s also a lot of misinformation,” she said. A lot of this is from outdated impressions of what having HIV is like that are based on how things were decades ago. People still assume HIV requires handfuls of pills to manage and causes severe side effects, but today many people just take one pill a day with minimal effects on their daily lives.
Of course Cheryl also spoke about how our work fits into this. At the Housing and Health Alliance, we primarily serve people who are homeless and have HIV. “Providing a home is first and foremost as far as treating the needs of people who are coming in,” Cheryl explained. We then build on this base to address physical health and mental health, and then we start helping people work towards their life goals, like returning to school or the workforce.