HIV&Me

Director
Ross Wilsson

Country
Great Britan

Running time
118 min

Year
2009

Part 1of the documentary looks at the rise of the disease in the early 1980s when little was known about Aids or how to treat it. While the disease has largely disappeared from headlines, and drugs to stem its progress are available in some communities, the number of new infections worldwide is increasing. Many of the infected are unaware they are positive. In the first half of this engaging, moving and shocking documentary, Fry delves into the reasons behind the rise in new infections and meets a range of people who talk candidly about living with HIV.

Part 2of the documentary, Fry meets experts to discuss how effective the new treatments are, meets "salvage patients", for whom none of the drugs now work and visits Uganda to find out why drugs are unavailable there.

He also takes an HIV test and meets 21-year-old Kate, who was born with the virus, having contracted it from her mother. Although the drugs have kept Kate alive, they have not been easy to take. But recent medical advances have allowed Kate to have an HIV-free child. Fry also meets Perry, an HIV-positive man who has become a father twice through a process known as "sperm-washing".

Fry discovers that, although medically things have improved for people with HIV, the prejudice remains - with many still subject to verbal and physical abuse. Worldwide, the stigma associated with HIV is pervasive, something many cite as a factor in widespread ignorance.