Haemophilia is a life-long, life-threatening inherited condition for which there is treatment but no cure. It affects not only the patient but all members of the family. This paper focusses on how AIDS/HIV, which shares these characteristics with haemophilia, has affected children with HIV, their siblings, those who have remained antibody negative and those with HIV infected fathers. The impact of haemophilia and AIDS on the family is considered and the ripple effect of AIDS on health care staff is addressed. © 1989, Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. All rights reserved.