Sports star set to publicly announce they are HIV+
A high-profile professional British sports person will allegedly announce in public that they are HIV positive to try to tackle stigma around the illness.
The sports star, who is thought to have millions of fans, is reportedly set to make the announcement on social media, and intends to demonstrate how it is possible to live a normal life while living with the disease.
They are taking part in a sporting event next month, and are said to be ready to reveal the news shortly beforehand.
HIV can be treated with anti-retroviral therapy, meaning that it is not life-threatening as long as it is dealt with early enough.
A source close to the star told The Sun: “The star has given this a lot of thought and plans to make the announcement on Twitter . It will cause a sensation but they are prepared for that.
"It is courageous, given attitudes in sport aren’t always the most enlightened. But it will prompt an outpouring of support and praise."
Human immunodeficiency virus can be spread through sexual contact and blood, and there are approximately 101,600 people with the disease in the UK.
Other high-profile sportspeople who have suffered with the disease include American baskeyball player Earvin "Magic" Johnson, who announced he was HIV positive in 1991, and British figure skater John Curry, who died of an AIDS-related heart attack in 1994.
HIV can lead to the development of AIDS, but with treatment this can be prevented.
It is not clear exactly when the alleged announcement will be made, but it is no doubt something that has been being planned for some time.
There have been more and more elite athletes speaking out about health in recent months, with the likes of Tottenham player Danny Rose and ex-footballer Clarke Carlisle talking openly about mental health and how they have suffered with depression.
Sportspeople are thought to be some of the most important influencers for young people.
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