The Netherlands has among its population of 17,020,000 about 23,000 adults living with HIV, and the enviable level of fewer than 500 new infections per year, down from more than twice that in 2009. Among adult people living with HIV (PLHIV), 80% are on Antiretroviral therapy (ART), a figure rising steadily by about 3% per year at least since 2010.
The overall number of infected children is tiny, and 95% get ART. The country’s program to prevent mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV is a success, averting virtually all infant cases.
The vast majority of HIV in the Netherlands is found among men who have sex with men (MSM), then migrants from high-prevalence countries, followed distantly by people who inject drugs (PWID). HIV infection is concentrated in the large cities.
Combating HIV/AIDS is a clearly stated aim of Dutch domestic and foreign policy, which it supports wholeheartedly. The levels of homophobia and stigma against people living with HIV (PLHIV) are low.
(Figures from UNAIDS, 2016)
The Time There-After
The Time There-After is a documentary by Willem Aerts and Erwin Kokkelkoren
We meet three men and two women who tell their life stories. Together the five stories give a clear picture of how the impact of HIV differs from person to person. A life with HIV cannot be generalized. Never. People are different, the date of infection differs and we all have our own unique backgrounds. Being infected in the 80’s, like Erwin and Marjolein, means you have to deal with more physical problems than those more recently infected like Celicia and Pablo. For this reason we have focused on these 5 courageous people’s stories and not the virus.
The Time There-After shows the drama of the 80’s and the 90’s, the enormous progress we made, life with HIV in 2013, and the dreams and tasks we have for tomorrow.
In the movie we meet Marjolein, Erwin, Celicia, Alexander and Pablo.