EastEnders to tackle HIV storyline as Zack Hudson gets surprise diagnosis

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EastEnders to tackle HIV storyline as Zack Hudson gets surprise diagnosis
EastEnders to tackle HIV storyline as Zack Hudson gets surprise diagnosis

EastEnders' Zack Hudson will be diagnosed with HIV after an acquaintance drops a bombshell on him.

Zack – fresh from his news that he and Whitney are having a baby together – will be dealt a shock blow when his old friend Brett turns up in Walford. He tells him that he has been diagnosed with HIV and tells Zack to get tested, too.

The BBC soap will be working with the Terrence Higgins Trust on the new storyline, where they hope to reflect and raise awareness of HIV. It will follow the aftermath of Zack receiving his diagnosis as well as the different options for treatment and the implications for Zack going forward and what it's like to live with the virus.

EastEnders to tackle HIV storyline as Zack Hudson gets surprise diagnosis rridqziqtqitinvZack is to be diagnosed with HIV (BBC/Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron)

The storyline follows Mark Fowler's diagnosis, after he became the first mainstream British TV character to be diagnosed with HIV.

Chris Clenshaw, Executive Producer of the BBC soap, said of the new storyline: " EastEnders has never shied away from covering sensitive issues and Zack’s story is one of these. There are still so many myths and disinformation surrounding HIV.

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"Working closely with Terrence Higgins Trust has enabled us to really understand what it is like for those that are diagnosed with HIV and we hope that this storyline will bring more awareness of HIV and what it is like to live with the virus in 2023."

EastEnders to tackle HIV storyline as Zack Hudson gets surprise diagnosisThe soap is working with the Terrence Higgins Trust on the storyline

Ian Green, Chief Executive at Terrence Higgins Trust, commented: "It’s been incredible to work with EastEnders on Zack’s story to show people across the UK that an HIV diagnosis doesn’t have to stop you from living life to the fullest.

"During the height of the HIV epidemic in the 1990s, we worked with EastEnders on Mark Fowler’s story to ensure HIV was portrayed accurately on screen. Mark was the first mainstream British TV character to be diagnosed with HIV. His story was viewed by millions and helped change attitudes about the virus when fear and misinformation was rife."

EastEnders to tackle HIV storyline as Zack Hudson gets surprise diagnosisHow will it affect those around Zack? (BBC/Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron)

It comes after Zack found out that, after a one night stand, he and Whitney were expecting a baby together. Next week on the BBC soap, Zack is less than impressed when he sees Brett in the Square.

As he tries to scare Brett into leaving Walford, he drops the bombshell that turns Zack’s world upside down.

*EastEnders airs Mondays through Thursdays at 7.30pm on BBC One.

Jasmine Allday

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