March Medical Outreach
On March 6th the Cherish Health Center staff put on an outreach at JP Cuttings, a flower farm business. The flower farm employs over 800 staff members, so our Cherish Health Center found it easier to set up an outreach on-site at JP Cuttings to test as many staff as possible.
Out of the 457 flower farm staff members tested for HIV, our Counselor Achilles had to break the news to 22 people that they had tested positive for HIV.
In addition to the HIV testing, there were 64 people that we found had Tuberculosis. We will now be the partner for the flower farm facility, and will provide treatment for those who need medical attention.
Counselor Achilles and Counselor Joan worked with a few volunteer counselors to meet with all of the tested staff members.
Counselor Achilles has a couple years of experience now working with at Cherish Health Center, but breaking the news to a patient that they are HIV-positive never becomes easy. There was a particular young woman at this medical outreach who he will remember because she was completely blindsided by her HIV-positive test result. Achilles calls her being in complete shock and thinking her world was ending, he told her what he says to every patient, “you are not rejected by God. You are not a outcast. God loves you, and don’t feel alone because we are here to walk this journey with you.” The young woman has now coped with the news and is doing well on ART (the HIV treatment) offered through Cherish Health Center.