ADAP 01 – Brandon Reynolds, 34, learned he had AIDS in April 2011. Reynolds, a self-described geek and a computer engineering student, says HIV is not the main focus of his life. "All it is is an uninvited guest -- it came to a party it's not invited to." In America, 6,595 people are waiting for HIV/AIDS drugs from a government program called the AIDS Drugs Assistance Program. Half of them are in Florida.
ADAP 02 – As Reynolds walks through Miami's South Beach, he juggles calls from doctors' offices, holding all the business cards and appointment reminders in his wallet. He receives his prescription medicine through charity. He landed on Florida's ADAP waiting list in October.
ADAP 03 – "It's bad to be on the waitlist for something you need for health," Reynolds says. "It's hard to see people struggle with a disease and not know if you can get treatment or not. It makes me sad in our country, here with stuff we can do, we're not doing enough."
ADAP 05 – Since being placed on the ADAP waitlist in January, the longest Jeremiah Torres has gone without medication is a week. "There shouldn't be a list," he says. "We're the richest country in the world. We have the means to take care of people." He receives charity care from pharmaceutical companies. Without them, he says "I'd be without medication. I'd be really sick right now."
ADAP 06 – Torres, 27, has AIDS. The younger generation is apathetic about the risks of HIV/AIDS, says Torres. They have no idea how expensive and difficult it is to get medication, he says. "I am jumping through fiery loops."
ADAP 07 – Earl Thompson is on the waitlist for ADAP. He learned he had HIV right before his 27th birthday this year. "I've been set to the back burner," he says. "HIV medicine is not something you can set on the back burner and wait till it gets financed."
ADAP 08 – Thompson, 27, born and raised in Jacksonville, Florida, returned home to be closer to his family in April. He had lived in Missouri where he qualified for Medicaid, but doesn't qualify for the same benefits in Florida. "Health care in the southern states is a forgotten issue," he says.
ADAP 09 – "It makes me feel alienated," he says, about being caught in red tape. "This could be your son or daughter. ... You nickel-and-dime, and it's like a person's health doesn't matter."
adap 10 – Lucy Virgo, who has HIV and a host of other medical problems was enrolled in ADAP, receiving her medication because she qualified for disability. But according to Virgo when she went to work, she lost the benefits and got kicked off ADAP for earning an income. She couldn't afford her medication on her salary.