There is currently no cure for HIV, but with proper and consistent treatment, people living with HIV can lead long and healthy lives.
HIV prevention refers to a range of practices that prevent the spread of HIV infection. While condoms are highly effective at lowering the chance of HIV transmission, as well as other sexually transmitted infections, there are more options to consider as effective prevention methods.
There are now several highly effective ways to prevent the transmission of HIV. In order to be highly effective, these tools need to be used consistently and correctly. Listed below are the preventative tools.
When having sex, condoms are an affordable and effective way of preventing HIV and other sexually transmitted infections.
Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP)
Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP)
This is an emergency pill that can be taken within 72 hours of potential exposure to HIV to prevent infection. Once prescribed, it must be taken daily for 28 days.
These are a set of non-judgmental approaches, practices and strategies grounded in the belief that if people are going to engage in “risky” behaviours, they will do it in the safest way possible.
Harm reduction methods provide a safe, supportive and non-judgmental environment to educate people on how to make informed decisions about their own drug use and sexual practices. Harm reduction sites, such as Supervised Consumption Sites (SCS) and Overdose Prevention Sites (OPS) allow people who use drugs to do so in a safe space, providing them with support as needed, in order to prevent and treat diseases such as HIV/AIDS.
U=U (Undetectable Equals Untransmittable)
People living with HIV who consistently adhere to treatment and maintain an undetectable viral load cannot sexually transmit HIV.
When an HIV-positive person goes on treatment, they can maintain an undetectable viral load, which means that they cannot pass on HIV to their sexual partner(s). When HIV is undetectable, it’s untransmittable (U=U).
If you are HIV+, take treatment and maintain an undetectable viral load, you can have sex knowing that you won’t pass HIV to your sex partner. Learn more about U=U.
CANFAR endorses the science behind U=U and stands in solidarity with an international network of stakeholders who have endorsed the consensus of the Prevention Action Campaign. The message of U=U empowers people living with HIV to be linked and retained in care, which is essential for optimal health and wellbeing.