HIV Policy and DNA Registration

Frequently Asked Questions

What is HIV and AIDS?

HIV is a virus that gradually destroys the body’s ability to fight infection and certain cancers.  AIDS is a condition resulting from the HIV infection.

How is HIV Contacted?

  • Body fluids that can transmit HIV include:  breast milk, semen, vaginal fluids, blood or body fluid containing blood.
  • Sexual contact with infected persons. 
  • Multiple sexual partners (particularly anal intercourse).
  • Contaminated needles used by intravenous (IV) drug abusers.
  • Transfusions of blood or blood products from a person with AIDS (rare).
  • Children born to a mother with HIV.
  • NOTE:  The disease in not transmitted through non-sexual contact and a person with HIV infection is not a risk to the general public.

What are Some Frequent Signs and Symptoms?

  • Initial onset of the infection may not produce symptoms.
  • Night sweats.
  • Mouth sores.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Fatigue.
  • Unexplained weight loss.
  • Genital changes.
  • Swollen lymph glands throughout the body.    

What are Some Preventive Measures I can Take to Reduce Risk of HIV Transmission?

  • Abstinence is the best practice.
  • Limit sexual partners and know their sexual histories.
  • Avoid sexual contact with persons who are HIV affected, known IV drug users or homosexual men.
  • Use latex condoms for vaginal and anal intercourse to reduce the risk of transmission.
  • If you are not certain that your sex partner is uninfected, you should use a latex condom and lubricant every time you have sex.
  • Avoid IV drugs.  Do not share needles or syringes.
  • The risk of oral sex is not fully understood and ejaculation into the mouth should be avoided.
  • Open-mouth kissing is considered a low risk for the transmission of HIV. However, prolonged open-mouth kissing could damage the mouth or lips which would allow the virus to be transmitted through sores or cuts in the mouth.  The Center for Disease (CDC) recommends against open-mouth kissing with an infected partner.
  • Individuals who are affected or those in risk groups are advised not to donate, organs, sperm, blood or tissue.
  • Early diagnosis can be beneficial if you are at risk; obtain an HIV test, although you feel well. Should you plan or become pregnant, ask your healthcare professional (HCP) for an HIV test.
  • Consult your HCP about vaccination against the hepatitis A and B viruses.

What is the Expected Outcome of an HIV Positive Test?

  • HIV is currently considered incurable. 
  • Symptoms can be relieved or controlled with medication. Consult your HCP for medication inquiries.
  • AIDS may not develop for years following a positive HIV test. 
  • Survival averages vary between individuals.

Possible Complications:

  • Serious infections.
  • Cancer.
  • Death.

What are some General Measures to Take to Reduce HIV Transmission?

  • Should you have concerns, consult your HCP for a physical exam.
  • Maintain spiritual and mental fitness.
  • Maintain and balance nutrition to include 6-8 glasses of water daily.
  • Exercise daily.
  • Use alcohol sparingly.
  • Balance the listed general measures to maintain a holistic lifestyle.


  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
  • Center for Disease Control (CDC) Information:  (800) 232-4636
  • US government HIV/AIDS Information: