In the “Expert Patient Program”, PATA employs people living with HIV in their clinics. With their inside knowledge expert patients improve the quality of health care and take over some of the work of overburdened health care professionals. One of the expert patients in the clinic CAP Heal Africa in The Democratic Republic of Congo describes how important her work is to raise awareness of HIV among local communities.
During my home visit work, I raise awareness about the importance of voluntary counseling testing. Once I met a 17 year-old teenager called O. who was very ill. O. believed that he was poisoned. I encouraged him to take the HIV test and he accepted. The test came out positive. I continued to encourage him to go to the clinic for treatment. At the beginning of his treatment, he weighed 24 kg but now (in August 2013) he weighs 49 kg. I am very happy to see him healthy and strong.