VANCOUVER - A B.C. woman who's been battling HIV-AIDS for the past 25 years says it's a national disgrace that many women living with the illnesses still don't get the care they need.
Margarite Sanchez says she's gone through the wringer trying to get adequate treatment and the provinces need more women-centred care to prevent transmission and death.
She says there are a lot of barriers for Canadians living with the disease who face stigma among the general population and even the medical community.
Sanchez says it's particularly hard for drug users, low-income women, and those living on island communities and the North, to get the help they need.
The Salt Spring Island, B.C., woman was diagnosed in 1993, and says her doctors encouraged her not to get tested because she didn't fit among the high-risk groups.
A recent study by the B.C. Centre of Excellence found women are 25 per cent more likely than men to receive sub-standard care for HIV-AIDS.