Recall that moment when you did something for the first time. Some people would have sweaty palms and parched throat but still be game and giddy in anticipation. Others would try to keep a cool facade despite the looming anxiety inside their chest.

In this year’s Hot Nurses of Pinas on National HIV Testing day we invite you to experience HIV testing for the first time. This coming June 15, 2019, together with our partner CBOs, the gorgeous nurses we have scouted will guarantee that your first time testing experience will be safe, sweet, and swift. Still need convincing? Well let our hot nurses share their first time experiences with you!

First Heartbreaks

Our hot nurses do not only believe in the importance of HIV awareness. They also have personal narratives to share that shaped them into the advocates that they’ve become. Take Nurse Joker for example. In his 9 years of experience as a government hospital nurse, he has witnessed people from different walks of life being diagnosed as people living with HIV (PLHIVs).

“For less than a year I have been working in the operating room, I have witnessed patients being diagnosed. Sadly the individuals being diagnosed are getting younger, some of them are minors.” explained Nurse Joker.

In Joker’s line of work he has been witnessing people from different walks of life getting infected by HIV. What to many are numbers on a report are actual people to him and seeing how the stigma prevents people from accessing help breaks Joker’s heart. The government and its partner NGOs are relentless in their efforts to prevent HIV and its stigma so this still gives Joker some hope amidst the heartbreak.

For Nurse Tenshi from the Philippine Heart Center, he experienced seeing people who have been diagnosed HIV positive while undergoing TB treatment.

“Usually I encounter a lot of young people undergoing Tuberculosis (TB) treatment who are also diagnosed with HIV” says Nurse Tenshi who has extensive experience in caring for patients with TB-HIV co-infection. In his line of work, Nurse Tenshi helps people to be adherent to their treatment regimen. Though it is still heartbreaking to see people living with HIV develop TB, Tenshi is determined in what he is doing as a nurse creates ripples of positive change within his patients by propagating hope through treatment. He also believes that creating a social milieu that is free from prejudice is the key towards an effective campaign against discrimination of patients with TB-HIV coinfection.

As nurses, Tenshi and Joker both have experienced heartbreaks as they care for people living with HIV in the country. Their epiphany that along with the exponential growth of HIV cases in our country is the miscommunication of information by lay people and some health practitioners about  living with HIV. Witnessing the realities of the stigma affecting access to healthcare, and the increasing demographic affected by the virus are the heartbreaking moments that our nurses had to face every day motivating them to join the campaign to promote HIV testing and spread correct information.

The First Step

Meet the faces of this year’s National HIV Testing Day on June 15, 2019. We promise you they’ll be gentle during testing and knowing your status will be one of the memorable firsts that you’ll share with your friends. Don’t forget to sign up here to be a part of this summer’s National HIV Testing Day.

This event is brought to you by LoveYourself Anglo in Mandaluyong, LoveYourself Uni and Victoria by LoveYourself in Pasay, LoveYourself Welcome in Manila City, LoveYourself White House, BISDAK Cebu, and CURLS Cebu in Cebu City, Decent Image of South Signal Association in Taguig City, Juan Posi+ive Movement in Pampanga, Project H4 in Palawan, Kagay-an Plus-Preserving Life, Uniting Society Inc. in Cagayan de Oro, Olympus Society of Davao, Inc. in Davao City, Cavite Positive Action Group The JCH Advocacy Inc. and AVES Love and Light in Cavite City, Mujer-LGBT Organization in Zamboanga, Family Planning Organization of the Philippines – Iloilo in Iloilo.

Text by Tofi Alonte