Friday, January 27, 2023

How To Find Out Someone’s Hiv Status

Sharing Your Test Result

10 Facts You Have to Know About HIV/AIDS

Will other people know my HIV test result?

HIV tests may be anonymous or confidential.

Anonymous testing means only you will know the test result.

  • When you take an anonymous HIV test, you get a unique identifier that allows you to get your test results.
  • You can also buy an HIV self-test if you want to test anonymously.

Confidential testing means your test result will be part of your medical record.

  • Your name and other personal information will be attached to your test results.
  • The results will go in your medical record and may be shared with your health care provider and health insurance company.
  • Otherwise, your results are protected by state and federal privacy laws, and they can only be released with your permission.

With confidential testing, if your test result is positive, the result and your name will be reported to the state or local health department to help public health officials estimate HIV rates in the state. The state health department will then remove all personal information about you and share the remaining information with CDC. CDC does not share this information with anyone.

Learn more about civil rights, workplace rights, and limits on confidentiality.

Should I share my positive HIV test result with others?

You should share your HIV status with your sex or needle-sharing partners. Whether you disclose your status to others is your decision.

Advice If You’re Pregnant

HIV treatment is available to prevent you passing HIV to your child.

Without treatment, there’s a 1 in 4 chance your baby will become infected with HIV. With treatment, the risk is less than 1 in 100 .

Advances in treatment mean there’s no increased risk of passing the virus to your baby with a normal delivery.

But in some cases, a caesarean section may still be recommended, often for reasons not related to your HIV.

Discuss the risks and benefits of each delivery method with the staff at your HIV clinic. The final decision about how your baby is delivered is yours, and staff will respect that decision.

If you have HIV, do not breastfeed your baby as the virus can be transmitted through breast milk.

Reporting Risk To Known Contacts

Partner notification is critical so that individuals know they are at risk, receive HIV counseling and testing, and get appropriate medical care. One of the most controversial issues is whether physicians may disclose the HIV status of their patients to known contacts and, further, whether failure to do so may give rise to liability if the known contact becomes HIV-positive. Though the threat of the contact is clear and immediate, individuals may be discouraged from undergoing testing if they know someone will notify contacts.

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Should You Disclose Do You Have To Disclose

Under Australian law, you do not have to disclose your positive status to a sexual partner on the proviso that you take reasonable precautions to prevent HIV transmission.

This means that if someone has HIV and they have sex with someone, they are not legally required to disclose this information so long as they are taking steps to protect the other person.

So what constitutes a reasonable precaution? A precaution could be:

  • Using a condom,
  • Seeking and getting confirmation that the other person is using PrEP.
  • A combination of the above

The bonus with a condom is that it also prevents other STIs like syphilis, which we are still experiencing an outbreak of syphilis.

One of the risks with using the knowledge that the other person is using PrEP is the possibility that they arent telling the truth. If you have sex with someone who says they are using PrEP but actually arent, you could be at risk from a legal standpoint.

Its also important to remember that even if you disclose your status, you are still legally required to take reasonable precautions to prevent transmission. Disclosure does not allow for sex without some form of protection.

How Disclosure Affects You And Others

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Disclosing your HIV status can be stressful. While you may receive love and support from some of the people you tell, others may not be as accepting. Try to find someone who can support you through this process. If you have not told any family members or close friends yet, turn to your health care provider, social worker, counselor, or AIDS service organization . To find the ASO closest to you in the US, click here. If you would like to connect with other women ) in The Well Project community, visit our page on Getting Connected.

Disclosing your HIV status will also have an effect on the people you tell. People will react differently to the news. Some may immediately embrace you and accept your diagnosis. Others may react negatively or need some time to process what you have told them. They may be scared for you or for themselves and may need some information in addition to time to adjust.

If you are afraid or embarrassed to tell them yourself, the health department in your area can notify your sexual or needle-sharing partners without even using your name.

Some people, especially sexual partners who may be afraid they have acquired HIV, may react with anger. If you feel threatened or unsafe, it is important that you get safe and stay safe. Call the National Domestic Violence hotline in the US at 800-799-SAFE for support. You can also check our fact sheet about Violence Against Women and HIV.

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Might There Be Negative Consequences Of Telling Someone I Have Hiv

Some people experience negative reactions and serious consequences of sharing their status this includes their status being shared with others without permission.

Unfortunately people have been fired from a job, asked to leave their religious group, experienced stigma or discrimination, or even kicked out of their home because of their HIV-positive status. This is not OK but sadly it does happen.

This is why its important to think about whether you trust someone before you tell them.

Some Practices Dont Reduce Your Risk Of Hiv

Some people use unreliable methods to reduce their risk of HIV. These include:

  • Serosorting choosing your sexual partner based upon them having the same HIV status as you.
  • Strategic positioning where an HIV-negative partner penetrates an HIV-positive partner.
  • Withdrawal when the insertive partner pulls out before ejaculating .

None of these strategies are reliable, so you are at risk of HIV transmission.Having sex only with people who have the same HIV status can be very risky. For example, a person may think they are HIV-negative, but may have been exposed to HIV since their last test, or may never have been tested at all.

Using a combination of proven, reliable strategies like condoms, PrEP, and undetectable viral load is the best way to prevent HIV transmission.

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How Can To Help Stop The Spread Of Hiv

To lower the risk of getting HIV and other STIs:

  • Those who are HIV-negative should consider PrEP. If a possible HIV exposure occurs, PEP may provide emergency protection.
  • Get tested and treated for STIs and follow healthcare providers recommended screening schedule.
  • Before having sex with someone, ask them to get tested for HIV and STIs.
  • Those who inject drugs should get clean needles from a needle exchange.
  • Avoid sharing needles for drugs and tattoos.

Talk to a healthcare provider about PrEP if a sexual partner has HIV with a detectable viral load or theres another known risk of contracting the virus. Heres a search tool for finding healthcare providers who prescribe PrEP.

Anyone who thinks they might have contracted HIV needs to get tested immediately. Early treatment can help manage the symptoms, lower the risk of complications, lower the risk of transmitting HIV to a sexual partner, and help people to live a long and healthy life.

When To Get Tested

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Seek medical advice immediately if you think theres a chance you could have HIV. The earlier its diagnosed, the earlier you can start treatment and avoid becoming seriously ill.

Some HIV tests may need to be repeated 1-3 months after exposure to HIV infection, but you should not wait this long to seek help.

A GP or a sexual health professional can talk to you about having a test and discuss whether you should take emergency HIV medicine.

Anti-HIV medicine called post-exposure prophylaxis may stop you becoming infected if taken within 72 hours of being exposed to the virus.

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What If I Am Being Harassed Because Of My Hiv Status

If you experience unwanted behaviour because your status has been shared without your consent, you might be able to pursue legal action. Unwanted behaviour which you find offensive, intimidating or humiliating is considered to be harassment. If the harassment is connected with your HIV status, it is considered to be a form of discrimination under the Equality Act. It does not have to be intentional. It could include receiving unwanted correspondence , abuse and bullying online, stalking, verbal abuse, threats, smashing windows or using dogs to frighten you. There are some grey areas about online abuse on social media, so you should seek legal advice in this situation.

You may be eligible for legal aid, or you might be able to access legal support via a trade union membership or through insurance . However, legal action is not always appropriate due to time limits, the stress and expense it involves, and limited access to legal advice.

If you are experiencing harassment in an employment setting, you should follow your employerâs grievance procedures and also make a claim to the Employment Tribunal within three months. Thereâs more information about sharing your HIV status with your employer on another page.

Telling A Date Or Partner

Revealing that you have HIV to someone youre about to come into sexual contact with is hard. It can be more difficult than telling your friends and family.

But were living in the U equals U era, when most researchers agree that an undetectable viral load means the virus is untransmittable. Although many people understand this, there are still people who may be worried or unsure about having sexual contact with someone who lives with HIV.

Keep the following in mind when making your decision to disclose your positive status to a partner:

  • Prepare yourself with the facts. Learn as much as you can about HIV treatments and prevention methods to answer any questions that may arise.
  • Support works both ways. If necessary, encourage them to get tested and offer to go with them.
  • Whether this is someone you plan to be with long-term, or just a casual encounter, its important that you make any sexual partners aware of your status.
  • Relax and share the information as if youre the one who has to hear it. Put yourself in their shoes and envision how youd want to be told if it were the other way around.
  • Reassure your date or partner that you follow a healthy lifestyle, adhere to your medication, and actively see a healthcare provider.
  • Remember, HIV is not a death sentence.

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Expect The Best But Prepare For The Worst

More often than not, your secret will remain safe with you and the people you trust. Its best not to get too preoccupied with the idea that somebody might reveal your secret without your permission.

Still, its a good idea to have a plan just in case. Its like buying car insurance even though you have no intention of getting into a crash.

Ask yourself whats the worst thing that could happen and then think about the best way to respond. Youre likely going to feel all kinds of nasty emotions and you may have to get them under control. Try to stay cool it helps to focus on doing things that help and avoiding things that hurt.

A plan is your first step toward making the best of a lousy situation. In the rare case that crap ever hits the fan, heres some suggestions for what to do next.

The Consequences Of Disclosure

Calm, Cushion, Call

Its easy to trace HIV stigmas roots to homophobia and leftover hysteria from the early AIDS epidemic. So, doesnt open disclosure help combat those issues? Thats the attitude I take when publicly discussing my status as a Black queer man living with HIV. Much like Love, I bear my status openly because I hope to serve as a possibility model for my brothers and sisters who are often treated as if they are at fault for one of the most devastating experiences that they have lived through. But that is my choiceand it has consequences that I would not wish upon anyone else.

Though health discrimination is illegal, I lost numeorus jobs as an educator after my status became known. I have lost potential romantic partners, and former friends have told me I am a walking biohazard waiting to explode. Though I tell myself that I am lucky to know where anyone who communicates this garbage to me stands, the truth is that I dont enjoy having to deal with their nonsense.

Id rather be treated as nicely as my friends with self-inflicted emphysema or cirrhosis are. Its easy for me to understand why people hide their status, whether they have hepatitis B, warts, or HPV, because the assumption is that we are nasty individuals deserving of scorn. Well, I am a nasty individual, but that does not make me, or any other nasty person, less worthy of the highest accord.

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What Are The Tests For Detecting Hiv

Various tests may be used for HIV detection:

  • HIV antibody test: This test detects the antibodies produced in the body in response to HIV.
  • Antigen test: This test can be done at an earlier stage than an HIV antibody test. It measures a protein called p24 antigen, present in the virus and produced in high amounts after the infection.
  • Nucleic acid test : It is also called an RNA test. It is a very specific test that looks for the virus itself and can detect HIV as early as about 10 days of infections.
  • In-home test kits: Although less accurate than the laboratory-based tests, home-based kits have the advantage of testing in the privacy and comfort of the home. Only FDA approved home-based kits should be used.
  • Viral culture: This involves using the patients sample and growing the virus in the lab. It takes longer to get the results and is not the most preferred test for HIV.

What Happens If I Test Positive For Hiv

If your initial test is positive for HIV antibodies, then additional testing is required to confirm that the first one was accurate. Sometimes this involves a second blood test.

When you are first diagnosed you will probably experience strong emotions. During this time, do not try to cope on your own. Seek support by speaking with your doctor, or contact your local community organisation. They have trained peer workers available to help you through the initial stages of a positive diagnosis, but also through your journey of living well with HIV.

Part of testing best practice includes pre- and post-test counselling. Post-test counselling is important, regardless of the outcome. If you test positive, counselling can provide emotional support, further information about living with HIV, and referrals to support services.

If the test is negative, counselling can provide education about HIV and how to reduce your HIV risk in the future. are community organisations that provide support and advocacy for people with HIV. Peer workers are also available to help you navigate living with HIV.

If you have recently been diagnosed with HIV, visit Victorian HIV Service for more information.

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How Common Is Mother

In the UK all pregnant women are offered an HIV test, because transmission can now be easily prevented.

Once its known that the mother-to-be is living with HIV, shell be put on treatment right away. The doctors will instruct her on how to protect the baby during pregnancy, delivery and once the baby is born. Shell also be advised not to breast feed and the baby will be given a course of HIV treatment.

Thanks to those strategies theres now less than 1% chance of the baby having HIV. This falls to 0.1% if the mother is on treatment with an undetectable viral load. Back when those interventions were not known and commonly used, the risk of transmission was 30-45%.

What To Do When Someone Outs Your Hiv Status

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Its hard enough to have somebody accidentally reveal your HIV status without your permission. Cousins, friends, coworkers theyre human, and they can slip up. Its forgivable.

Getting intentionally outed is something else. When somebody knows you want your HIV status secret but blabs anyway, you may feel emotions like betrayal, shame, rage, and regret.

But what should you do about somebody outing your HIV status? These ideas might help:

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Aids/hiv Symptoms At Each Stage Of The Disease

After an acute HIV infection, the virus continues to reproduce at a slow pace. A person may or may not have symptoms.

Treatment can slow or stop the progression of the virus. Without treatment, some people may experience no further symptoms for up to a decade after the initial infection.

The neck may swell under the jaw and behind the ears. The swelling can cause swallowing problems and last for days or months.

If a person is not receiving HIV treatment, the virus can cause nausea, diarrhea, poor absorption of food, and loss of appetite.

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