Over a decade ago, Jerome Cuffee refused to accept the reality that he was HIV positive. Having no symptoms for five years, he could not identify with the dire conditions of the stereotypical AIDS patients in the media. He got rid of the medicine prescribed to him and never told his family about his condition. That is, until he ended up in the hospital due to his AIDS. Judy Wessell, DNP, treated him and directed him to the AIDS Resource Center at EVMS. It was at the Resource Center that Jerome learned how to manage his disease and the important parts of his life that it effects. Later on, Jerome completed the Peer Educator Training at EVMS. Through volunteer work, Jerome found a job as a full-time AIDS educator. Now he speaks all around the community, educating and empowering other AIDS patients in the same way EVMS empowered him.

See more patient stories here: evms.edu/MyStory

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