The Cost Of AIDS: Medical And Financial

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If you became HIV positive today, how much would it cost you - in checkups, blood tests, hospital visits and endless prescriptions - to stay alive?

December 1st is observed each year as World AIDS Day. It's a time when many people reflect on the fight against HIV and remind each other to get tested, protect themselves, and know the cost of infection. But few of us really understand the cost of living with AIDS. Not just the physical toll or the emotional cost, but the price tag.

We'd like to start a conversation on the cost of AIDS by talking to a member of our team who knows it all too well. Mark Trautwein became HIV positive at a time when AIDS was considered a death sentence. Thankfully he lived to see it become a manageable disease, finding himself among those who could afford to manage it. Today Trautwein is the editor of KQED's listener commentary series Perspectives. He has written about his experiences living with AIDS in a New York Times commentary for World AIDS Day 2011.

Listen to Mark Trautwein and KQED's Joshua Johnson discuss what AIDS has literally cost him.

You can also add to the conversation by commenting here, or by sharing the financial toll AIDS has taken on your life at our blog State of Health.

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