Holy Family Center
The Holy Family Center at Nazareth Hospital provides education, drug and nutrition support, and fellowship for thousands of HIV/AIDS patients. Programs like Mother to Mother work to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV through counseling and medical guidance. The Youth Mentor Program brings HIV+ teens together to build community and combat the stigmas surrounding HIV/AIDS. Today more than 5,000 HIV+ patients are cared for by the full-time medical staff at the Holy Family Center (HFC) at Nazareth Hospital. The clinic provides antiretrovirals and assists HIV+ patients in many aspects of their lives, going far beyond just medical care.
MEET ERIC – HFC Program Coordinator
Eric is the program coordinator at the Holy Family Center and has been so for 3 years. Before that, Eric joined TOL in 2010 as a nurse. He has now transitioned to his current position where he works with the 60 other staff that keep the HFC and related clinics up and running smoothly. He is in charge of the over 5,500 patients ranging in age from 1-80. HIV is a journey, and Eric is responsible for taking each patient through this journey. At the center, HIV+ patients are able to get the medication they need, meet with counselors and get many other necessary services. Eric and the other workers go on home visits to assess each patient’s environment at home and to ensure that they are taking their medications correctly. In addition, they provide support if patients are in need of food or transportation to the center. The center provides valuable programs such as food baskets, support to afford expensive tests, HPV vaccination, and other cancer screenings. Eric goes home each day to his wife and 2 sons who are 6 and 2. The Holy Family Center runs as well as it does because of Eric and his dedication to his work.
Youth Mentor Program
Living with HIV is challenging enough for your health. However, today, many of those diagnosed with HIV face stigma and scrutiny because of their diagnosis. There is a big push for awareness and acceptance in ages 10-24. Because these children have to be in school, they often prioritize education over getting their medicine and treatment. The youth mentor program gives the youth a leader to help them get past the stigma and learn how to properly take care of themselves. Since the creation of the program, there has been improvement in their daily lives and the overall suppression rate for that age group has been much higher.
Mother to Mother
Without intervention, there is a 15%-45% chance that a HIV+ mother can transmit to their child during periods of pregnancy, labor, delivery and breastfeeding. However, with small amounts of intervention this rate can be reduced to below 5%. That is what our Mother-to-Mother program is designed to do. Over the past 7 years our program has had a 0% transmission rate from HIV+ mothers to their child.