Expanding community through ARV provision in Thailand

C. Lyttleton*, A. Beesey, M. Sitthikriengkrai

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


Anti-retrovirals (ARVs) have altered the complexion of HIV/AIDS management in Thailand. In 2005, ARVs were included within a subsidised health scheme making provision widespread. Increased access has been brought about through the legal and political advocacy of the Thai Network for People Living with HIV/AIDS (TNP+) who now play a central role in expanded ARV provision. HIV-infected volunteers help the state deliver comprehensive services and assist with follow-up and adherence programs. Alongside improvements in drug provision, a focus on pharmaceutical treatment has left other issues, such as community support of orphans and the social responses to living with HIV, less central within community responses. As they take on new responsibilities, people living with HIV/AIDS (PLHA) groups move from activities focused on reversing local stigma to constitute a new social movement that is increasingly prominent in Thai civil society. Networks of PLHA confront new social and political challenges as they also seek to broaden access to marginalised groups who remain excluded from these services. Many ethnic minority groups without full Thai citizenship have been denied access to subsidised health services including ARVs. As part of a broadening advocacy profile, the PLHA movement is now engaging in a politics of difference defined not simply by presence or absence of HIV but also by wider issues of national identity and belonging.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S44-S53
Number of pages10
JournalAIDS Care
Issue numberSUPPL.1
Publication statusPublished - 2007


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