HIV Positive

The Hivpoint offers support services for people living with an HIV infection and their close ones.

The support services include individual support and crisis discussions in situations where an HIV positive person, their family member, or a close one feels they need support in treating or living with the disease. The form of support can vary from matters related to residence permits, living arrangements, or discrimination to couple and family relations and counselling, depending on the situation.

The Hivpoint offers the following services:
• social counselling
• health counselling
• adaptation training courses
• other forms of group and peer support activity

In addition to client appointments and peer support activity, guidance and support is offered through telephone counselling. To get started, call our helpline +358 207 465 705 Mon-Thu between 10 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.

All services offered at the Hivpoint are free of charge.

Being HIV Positive in Finland

In Finland, there are circa 200 new HIV diagnoses annually. During the past 30 years, over 3,300 persons have been diagnosed with HIV. As treatments have developed, people living with HIV can nowadays live an almost entirely normal life.

A diagnosed HIV infection is always a turning point in the patient’s life. The first stage always involves a lot of questions, uncertainty and learning to live with a chronic disease. All infected people experience their disease differently. For some, the first phase and learning about one’s illness can be hard to swallow, whereas someone else might find it relieving to get an affirmation for their suspicions and to receive good care.

For the most part, a person who has caught HIV can continue with their work or their studies normally. HIV is not transmitted in any everyday situations, so HIV positive people can continue to socialise and act with their families and friends and their hobbies just as before. HIV positive people can date and form families. Thanks to effective medical treatment, HIV positive people can live their lives without any symptoms. The advancement of the disease can usually be stopped with medical treatment.

However, uncertainty and outdated information on the contagiousness of HIV and the commonness of HIV risks prevail among the general public. Many people have faulty or insufficient information on HIV, which may lead to prejudice against HIV positive people.

Help and support in questions in the different stages of HIV is offered, among others, by the Hivpoint, HIV Finland association and the doctors or nurses at your local infection disease or internal medicine outpatient clinic. You don’t have to stay alone and seek information by yourself after receiving the diagnosis – we are here to help.

Counselling and Support Discussions

People with HIV infection are offered the opportunity to discuss different matters related to living with HIV with the employees of the Hivpoint.

In addition to the disease itself, an HIV infection can raise many sorts of questions: Whom should I tell about my disease, and how? How will HIV affect my relationship and sex life? Can I have children? Will HIV affect my career choices and do I have to tell about my infection at my workplace?

These and many other questions can be discussed confidentially with the employees of the Hivpoint, either in person at our offices or on the phone.

Also family members and close ones of HIV positive people may receive counselling and support.
Contact the personnel of the Hivpoint at the number +358 207 465 705 Mon–Thu from 10 am to 3.30 pm.

Social Counselling

Social counselling means referring clients to services that complement psychosocial support. Matters discussed within social counselling may relate to living arrangements, permits of residence, income, work life, studies or different kinds of social benefits and rights, among others.

Social counselling can also give advice in possible discrimination situations or in relation to drug problems or family situations.

The aim of social counselling at the Hivpoint is to act as an HIV expert for the client and other service providers, to provide guidance for the client on the situations where it is necessary to bring up the disease, as well as to give consultation (at request) to the client’s other service providers.

Adaptation Training Courses

The Hivpoint provides adaptation training courses for HIV positive people. Family courses and couples courses are open for family members as well.

We organise courses for gay and bisexual men, women, immigrants and families every year. In addition, we offer camps and meetings for children and young people living with HIV. Every other year, we also organise courses for heterosexual men, gay couples and people who have lived with HIV for a long time, among others.

The aim of the courses is to support life management and the ability to function, to find resources and to get peer support from other HIV positive people. The courses are organised primarily in the Helsinki metropolitan area and last for 2–4 days. Dates, detailed course programmes and application form are found here.