Nurses—Making a Difference in Global Health
Nurse Stories: Combat HIV, AIDS, Malaria and all communicable and non-communicable diseases
Extraordinary Ordinary Nurses
Sr. Anne John
Sr. Anne has been a pillar of strength for patients who suffer from AIDS or are HIV positive in Mumbai, India. For the past 20 years her aim has been to get maximum benefits from all the government Programmes in India for these individuals. Her achievements have been been to successfully establish a home centre for patients who suffer from AIDS or are HIV positive and are not able to pay for their care.
This home is a small establishment situated on the outskirts in a suburb near Mumbai. Sr. Anne has facilities for screening, consultation, counseling, and a dormitory for those who are discharged from the hospital. The dormitory allows girls who are still not able to go home due to suffering from AIDS associated disorders or are weak and, for economic reasons, may not be able to convalesce at home.
Sr. Sumitra has been Sr. Anne's associate, assisting her since she retired from nursing. They also give drug therapy to these patients and have doctors who have volunteered to help them with this.
Sr. Anne also developed the entire set up on donations from well wishers and she depends on the Government of India for the therapy and interventional assistance. She maintains 100% confidentiality of the victims, who trust her explicitly.
Sr. Shanti is Sr. Anne John’s neighbor. Their passion or for nursing HIV positive and AIDS victims is their common bond.
After retiring from active nursing, Sr. Shanti joined this social venture where only HIV positive girls with no where to turn are welcome. Many girls have been left with her after they are born.
Sr. Shanti single-handedly cares for these babies and girls, nursing them to good health when most of them have no relatives or are abandoned. Many turn negative and all those who continue therapy may also contact associated disorders, such as TB. They go to school and later establish themselves and move on like any one else within society.
Dr. Shanti also obtains government aid for therapy and is very particular about confidentiality. It is very difficult to convince her to write about her ventures for fear the girls may get labeled and find it difficult to be accepted in today’s society.
Author Contact Information:
Phalakshi Manjrekar M.Sc. N
P.D.Hinduja National Hospital
Mumbai - 400 016