We strive to organize
all patient care through a team approach that
is comprehensive, accessible and personalized.
You may receive care from any number of infectious
disease specialists, including doctors, nurses,
social workers and other health care professionals.
Although there may be many on your care team,
be assured that they communicate regularly with
each other so you receive coordinated care. You will be given a card with the names and contact information for your team at your visit.
Primary Care Providers
Your primary care provider will be a physician.
You will be cared for by physicians who have
received specialized training in the field of
infectious disease. As MGH is a teaching hospital
affiliated with the Harvard Medical School, doctors
receiving advanced subspecialty medical training,
such as residents and fellows, may also work
with your physician.
A nurse practitioner (NP) is a registered nurse
who is certified to practice in an advanced role.
NPs receive training in medicine and infectious
diseases. You may see a nurse practitioner for
a physical exam, a routine visit, diagnosis and
care of treatment-related problems, education,
symptom management, counseling, and referrals
to hospital and community services.
The nursing staff is adept at caring for patients
with infectious diseases. Your nurse works closely
with all members of the team to help you to understand
your diagnosis and treatment, manage medication
side effects, effectively care for yourself,
and prevent medical problems. Also, they act
as case managers, helping you navigate the various
services here at MGH as well as beyond.
A social worker provides support for the many
issues that may affect you and your family during
your illness and recovery. The social workers
have specialized knowledge and experience in
the emotional and social aspects involved in
your care. Counseling is available as well as
assistance with problem solving and linkage to
hospital and community resources. You may wish
to join one of the several support groups they
Clinical Research Nurse / Clinical Research
New medical treatments for HIV disease and related problems are developed through clinical trials. Clinical trials are an important way to determine a treatment’s safety and effectiveness. If you wish to take part in a clinical trial or your care team recommends taking part in a study, a member of the research team will go over the details of the study with you. These individuals will join your health care team to coordinate and manage your care. Some studies provide compensation for your time and effort.
There are many other individuals who help support you and your treatment team including medical assistants, receptionists and administrative assistants. The support staff is a collaborative team dedicated to ensuring that you receive the best care possible.
Websites for HIV
(note no “www” prefix)
HIV/AIDS Treatment Information Service –
1 (800) HIV-0440. English and Spanish