Skip to content

HIV & AIDS Health Center

Font Size
A
A
A

Actress Gloria Reuben: AIDS Activist

The ER and Raising the Bar star works to boost HIV and AIDS awareness and education.
By
WebMD Magazine - Feature

Gloria Reuben first started grappling with HIV issues as part of her role on ER, as physician assistant Jeanie Boulet, one of the first openly HIV-positive characters on prime-time TV. But soon, the scripts began to take over her off-duty thoughts. “It follows you around wherever you go,” says Reuben, who was on the ER set until 1999. And when she accepted an invitation to a fundraiser from the late Elizabeth Glaser, she stepped into a new role as an AIDS activist.

This past July, Reuben, who now plays a legal eagle on TNT’s new series Raising the Bar, was the featured speaker at a Minnesota AIDS Project forum in Minneapolis. In August, she accompanied the CEO of the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation on a three-day tour of clinics and hospitals in South Africa. And on Dec. 1, she will participate in World AIDS Day, as she has for the past several years. She’s also a board member for the U.S. Sexuality Information and Education Council.

Recommended Related to HIV/AIDS

Expanding HIV and AIDS Drug Options

Today, HIV-positive people have many options for AIDS and HIV medication. These options include: Anti-HIV medications that treat HIV infection Drugs that treat side effects of the disease or HIV treatment Drugs that treat opportunistic infections that result from a weakened immune system Researchers are continuing to develop many new types of AIDS and HIV medications.

Read the Expanding HIV and AIDS Drug Options article > >

There’s too much yet to do to cut back, Reuben says. Nearly 1.2 million Americans live with HIV or AIDS; in 2006, more than 56,000 new cases of HIV or AIDS were reported. “The stigma surrounding AIDS has improved a great deal,” she says, “but there is still a long way to go.” Reuben prefers grassroots activism to star-studded events. “My focus is to get more into the community, getting people more involved in their own health care,” she says. “There will always be funds that need to be raised. But as people get involved on an individual level, it has a way of sustaining itself over time.” That’s something Reuben knows firsthand.

Today on WebMD

misconception
How much do you know?
contemplative man
What to do now.
 
research
Should you be tested?
HIV under microscope
What does it mean?
 
HIV AIDS Screening
Slideshow
man opening condom wrapper
Quiz
 
HIV AIDS Treatment
Feature
Discrimination Stigma
Feature
 
Treatment Side Effects
Feature
grilled chicken and vegetables
Article
 
obese man standing on scale
Article
cold sore
Article