What's in a nam(e)?

This article is more than 12 years old. Click here for more recent articles on this topic

We often get asked 'what do the initials NAM stand for?' So, as it's World AIDS Day, we thought this was a prominent time to 'reveal' the mystery...

The initials originally stood for ‘National AIDS Manual’. As these pictures show, back in 1987, when the charity NAM was first founded, the 'Manual' was a huge ring binder containing all the available information on HIV and AIDS.  Produced at a time where there was little information, lots of hysteria and limited medical treatment, it was an important, evidence-based reference point for medical and other professionals as well as people diagnosed with HIV and AIDS.

NAM's resources have developed  and evolved over the years to reflect the changing epidemic, developments in treatment and care and the changing information needs of people living with and working in HIV all over the world. We have a huge range of resources pitched at different levels, online and in print, in different languages for different types of people.

We now produce more than just one, big Manual and we support audiences all over the world, not just at a 'national' level - so we have become known simply as 'NAM'.

Those weighty ring binders are tucked away safely in the NAM archive, an important part of our charity's history. But the 'essence' of this approach to delivering HIV and AIDS information lives on and is reflected through our day-to-day work: providing calm, reliable, authoritative, independent information to anyone who needs it.