Caring for Women and their Children in a Family Clinic

Dr. Dayle Zieff

I feel fortunate to be working in the Kidzpositive clinic where many of my patients are mothers of the children. A mother is the most important person in most children's lives - one of few people who will care for and love the child unconditionally. Thus, caring for mothers is a most important part of caring for children in our clinic. So often mothers forget about their own health, focusing on their children only, yet we know that if a mother is ill this will profoundly impact on the health of her children. Being HIV positive and having an HIV infected child brings a range of physical, psychological and emotional difficulties. Some mothers are critically ill, requiring hospitalization or intensive medical management. Many have made miraculous recoveries on antiretroviral therapy. Others are clinically well yet on further investigation also require antiretroviral therapy. This underlines the importance of regular follow up and CD4 count monitoring of even asymptomatic mothers. Many mothers are clinically well and do not yet require anti retrovirals; they too benefit from regular follow up. My patients are often women of great courage, living life to the full despite many challenges and hardships. They greatly appreciate having a space where their own health can be focused on and a plan made for their well being. Through the mothers' support group, informal discussions in the waiting area and the Positive Beadwork project, an atmosphere of intimacy, honesty and industriousness has been set in the clinic. Many mothers take this forward into their own lives. Time and again I have witnessed that openness, honesty and willingness to accept support are key on the road to health for mothers and children. The more our clinic can encourage this, the greater successes we will achieve.

Join our mailing list

Ndebele cards

Our new product 'Ndebele cards' feature beautiful ethnic designs on beaded squares with a pin attached so you are buying more than just a card and your purchase is supporting a family affected by HIV/AIDS. The beadwork can be worn as a brooch or pinned to a bag. The cards are R20 each and can be ordered from beads@kidzpositive.org or inquiries to
+27 21 686 9710.