HIV Transmission & Prevention 

How it spreads, and how to stop it

How does HIV Spread? 

 

HIV can be transmitted via the exchange of a variety of body fluids from infected people, such as blood, breast milk, semen and vaginal secretions. Contact such as unprotected sex or sharing needles are possible ways to transmit HIV. It’s not possible to be infected through ordinary day-to-day contact such as kissing, hugging, shaking hands, or sharing personal objects, food or water

Certain groups faced an increased risk of HIV due to legal and social factors exposing them to high risk situations while also blocking their access to effective, affordable HIV prevention methods.  The World Health Organisation has identified 5 of these groups specifically:

  • Men who have sex with men 

  • People who inject drugs

  • People in prisons (and other closed settings) 

  • Sex workers

  • Transgender populations 

Testing & Screening
1 hr
RM 40 - 70
How to stop HIV 

 

Anyone can get HIV, so it’s important to know and manage the factors which will make it easier, or harder, for you to get HIV. 

There are certain factors which are known to increase the risk of HIV transmission which should be avoided if possible. These are known as risk factors, and are listed below. 

  • Unprotected anal/vaginal sex 

  • Having another STI (such as syphilis, herpes, chlamydia, gonorrhea, etc)

  • Sharing contaminated injecting equipment (needles, drug solutions, etc) 

  • Unsafe/sterile injections, transfusions or other medical procedures which involve cutting & piercing the skin 

  • Needle stick injuries

  • Acute HIV infection 

 

HIV transmission can also be reduced through the inclusion of protective factors into your activities. These can significantly reduce the chance that HIV is transmitted between partners. 

  • Condom usage 

  • Using PrEP and PEP for the negative partner 

  • ART treatment(link) for the positive partner 

  • Circumcision

 

One of the most effective ways to prevent HIV transmission is by knowing your status, and testing regularly, so that you know which risk factors you face, and so you can choose the best option for protecting yourself and your partner!

If you're interested in PrEP or PEP, click here to find out more! 

Read more about HIV prevention

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