In the late 1990s, the Thai Government started offering free antiretroviral medicines to several thousand people. Apiwat Kwangkaew, currently Vice-Chair of the Thai Network for People Living with HIV, was one of the lucky ones.
“Twenty years ago I got really sick because of AIDS. I didn’t think I was going to make it,” said Mr Apiwat. Within a few months of starting treatment, he was healthy again.
“What was really tragic was that antiretroviral medicines existed, but my friends and other people living with HIV were not accessing them,” he said.