This short guide highlights three rights from the NHS Constitution, an important document that explains the rights that all NHS England patients have.2 You may find these helpful when speaking to your doctor or nurse about your HIV treatment.
Talk to your doctor or nurse about what is important to you, so you can work together to choose the best treatment for you.
Do you have needs relating to your age and lifestyle when choosing treatment? This could include travel, work and family life.
Are you taking any medication for another condition which could change what treatment you need?
If so, does the amount of pills you take affect your HIV treatment preferences?
Does your treatment need to fit around your job or social activities?
Ask your doctor or nurse questions and tell them what you think and feel so you are part of every decision.
Have you made a list of questions to talk through with your doctor or nurse?
Have you taken enough time to think about your treatment options?
Would it be helpful to take notes at your appointment so you can remind yourself about what you discussed?
You should be given all the information you need to make decisions about treatment with your doctor or nurse. It’s always okay to ask for more information.
Do you understand the information you have been given, or do you have any unanswered questions?
Have you asked what other treatment options are available to you on the NHS?
Is there someone else you can speak to that can help you discuss your treatment with your doctor or nurse?
These are just some of your rights covered under Section 3a of the NHS Constitution.
For the full list see: www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-nhs-constitution-for-england
The Treating Me Right campaign is a disease awareness programme that has been developed and paid for by Gilead Sciences Ltd, a science-based pharmaceutical company. Content development has been supported by input from patient groups with an interest in HIV in the UK.
1. The King’s Fund. Understanding NHS financial pressures. Available from:
https://www.kingsfund.org.uk/publications/understanding-nhs-financial-pressures (last accessed July 2017)
2. The NHS Constitution for England. Available from: www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-nhs-constitution-for-england (last accessed July 2017)