Against All Odds: HIV/AIDS Epidemic Among Indigenous Papuans
Dessy's (24) diary entry of her daughter's death, Yhoana, who died from a sudden illness at the age of 2. Dessy is HIV positive but she did not take ARV medications during her pregnancy nor gave birth via Cesarean Section to reduce the probability of passing on the virus to her child. Currently, Dessy is in poor health because she is still not taking ARV. Dessy's twin sister is also HIV- positive.
In Papua there are more records of housewives infected with HIV than sex workers. In most cases, housewives contracted HIV from their husbands. As a result, many pregnant women who are unaware of their infection often pass the virus to their infants. Fortunately, HIV testing on pregnant women is a mandatory practice conducted during prenatal care. Nevertheless, the transmission of HIV from mother to child still occurs, especially since many women have limited access to a clinic during their pregnancy.