Assignment Two – Clinical Pathway
When a patient with HIV/AIDS needs to be dealt with in the context of health care organizations, a clinical pathway must be addressed. This particular client is in the early stages, meaning there is significant action that can be taken in order to improve his quality of life. This assessment guide and plan of care will summarize the patient’s history, health condition, and current situation in order to determine the best way to handle the diagnosis of HIV/AIDS.
The patient is a 26-year-old Caucasian man, middle-to-high income, who has recently been diagnosed in the past four months with HIV. He contracted it through a male sexual partner, who has been informed of the diagnosis as well. This is indicative of the prevalence of HIV and AIDS among the homosexual community, despite his being in a monogamous relationship at the time with the partner in questions (CDC, 2010).
Medical Records Providers
The medical records for the patient are being provided by his general practitioner and the specialists related to his disease.
Chief Complaint and Subjective History
The patient’s chief complaint is of the diminished quality of life he is experiencing (and will experience) as a result of the diagnosis. He has always been extremely active, maintaining a healthy diet and exercise regimen; however, with the new diagnosis he is experiencing more lingering pain and illness, which is leaving him emotionally depressed as well (NIA, 2004).
Effects of Injury/ Illness on Daily Living
Currently, the effect of the patient’s HIV on their daily life is minimal; he maintains exercise and an active lifestyle, though he has remained celibate since the diagnosis. Apart from the mild discomfort that comes from the illnesses he acquires, and their longer incubation time, he lives life as he normally would.
Current Physical Complaints
The patient already complains of stomach pain and low energy. Illnesses such as colds and the flu are also taking longer to go away due to the diminished immune system he is experiencing. Aches and pains are becoming more constant and ongoing, and he is finding it harder to maintain the same pace previously held in his running and exercise regimens. He gets tired more easily, and he is passing fluids and food waste more readily. He is beginning to lose weight and energy, but only slightly.
Past Medical History
The patient has had various allergic reactions to peanuts, dander and the like in the past. A hospital visit a year ago for syphilis was met with complete treatment; otherwise, the patient has had little contact with health care professionals since childhood.
Current Medical and Rehabilitation Situation
The patient currently has a family practitioner, the same since childhood; she handles the majority of his general health problems, with the exception of specialists to deal with his therapy. He is taking antiretroviral medication and undergoing therapy sessions to address his life expectancy and his resistance to the virus; he has a number of specialists that he sees on a regular basis, and he is taking steps to ensure that he has easy access to hospital care at any time.
The patient has a high-paying job in the communications and IT industry, and as such has sufficient money and health benefits to support his health care situation. He has full health and life coverage in terms of insurance, meaning no expense is being spared in his treatments, particularly in antiretroviral therapy.
Family / Community Support
The patient is single and an only child, but the family and parents are extremely supportive, providing sufficient emotional and community support during his health care. He has many friends in his community and immediate area, leaving him with many options for communication and outreach that are extremely close to him. His parents have moved in with him to ensure that he is not in his house alone, and they continue to supervise and care for him.
With the proper regimen of antiretroviral medication and therapy, as he is currently undertaking, the patient is expected to live a long, full life, even with this disease. The factors in his environment and system that could contribute to the progression to AIDS are minimal at best, meaning that there is a chance that he will not acquire AIDS until his late 40s, if at all. The life expectancy for someone going through antiretroviral therapy after a new diagnosis is up to 50 years, making this patient’s odds very high (Knoll et al., 2007; Antiretroviral Therapy Cohort Collaboration, 2008).
In conclusion, the patient, due to his early diagnosis and treatment, is expected to live and long and healthy life. The support of his family, his financial situation, and his dedication to undergoing antiretroviral therapy create a perfect situation considering his diagnosis, and therefore should allow him to maintain a healthy, active life with minimal discomfort, on a comparative scale.
Antiretroviral Therapy Cohort Collaboration (2008). “Life expectancy of individuals on
combination antiretroviral therapy in high-income countries: a collaborative analysis of 14 cohort studies”. Lancet 372 (9635): 293–9.
Center for Disease Control (2010). “HIV and AIDS among gay and bisexual men.” Retrieved
HIV, AIDS, and older people. (2004). Bethesda, Md.: National Institute on Aging, U.S. Dept.
of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, National Institutes of Health.
Knoll B, Lassmann B, Temesgen Z (2007). “Current status of HIV infection: a review for non-
HIV-treating physicians”. Int J Dermatol 46 (12): 1219–28.