Photo of flowers with inductee name Ann Petru

Ann Petru was inducted into the Health Category in 2015.

My Story

Dr. Ann Petru is Co-Director of Infectious Diseases at UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland, where since the earliest days of the HIV/AIDS crisis she has been the leading care provider and advocate for pediatric AIDS patients.   Dr. Petru cared for the Bay Area's first pediatric HIV/AIDS case in 1983.  In 1986, she started the Pediatric HIV/AIDS Program at Children's, through which she has treated more than 800 HIV-infected and HIV-exposed infants, children and adolescents. Many of her patients were among the first to participate in AZT treatment and other clinical trials. These groundbreaking studies were instrumental in the development of drug therapies that, over time, have been very successful in extending the lives of young HIV/AIDS patients. Dr. Petru has also been advocating the early testing of pregnant women and encouraging the widespread use of maternal drug therapies that have, in turn, greatly reduced the transmission of HIV from mothers to their infants.  She also became a leader in educating health providers and the public about pediatric HIV issues, and her work has been pivotal in reducing the stigma associated with such cases.  Thanks to Dr. Petru's assertive treatment and tireless advocacy, many of the pediatric HIV patients she has treated over the years are alive and still thriving today.