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HIV/AIDS Prevention and Treatment

HIV—or human immunodeficiency virus—is a virus spread through certain body fluids that weakens a person’s immune system by destroying important cells that fight disease and infection. There is no cure for HIV, but with proper medical care, HIV can be controlled. 

Frequently Asked Questions

For more questions and answers about HIV and AIDS, please visit the CDC Website.

Q1:

How is HIV transmitted?

A:

HIV can be transmitted through sexual contact, by sharing needles (to inject drugs), and from the mother to a baby during pregnancy, birth, or breastfeeding. To learn more specific information about how HIV is transmitted, visit the CDC Website.

Q2:

How can the spread of HIV be prevented?

A:

Abstinence (not having sex of any kind), is the only way to prevent the spread of HIV 100%. Other effective ways to reduce the risk include:

  • Limiting your number of sexual partners
  • Use condoms correctly every time you have sex
  • Never share needles

If you're already living with HIV or if you have a high risk for HIV, there are other options. Visit the CDC website to learn more about how to prevent the spread of HIV.

Q3:

How can I know if I have HIV?

A:

The only way to know for sure whether you have HIV is to get tested. CDC recommends that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 get tested for HIV at least once as part of routine health care. To learn more about HIV testing, and to find a test center near you, visit the CDC website.

Q4:

Does TRICARE cover HIV testing?

A:

Yes. TRICARE covers HIV testing as part of the annual Health Promotion and Disease Prevention exam.

Fact Sheets

File Description
HIV 101 This fact sheet from the CDC provides the basics about HIV--how it's transmitted, how to protect yourself and how to live healthy if you already have HIV.
HIV Testing 101 This fact sheet from the CDC offers information about who should get tested, where to get tested and details about positive and negative results.
Living with HIV 101 This fact sheet from the CDC offers resources for those already living with HIV.
U.S. Military HIV Research Program The U.S. Military HIV Research Program (MHRP) is at the forefront of the battle against HIV to protect U.S. troops from infection and to reduce the global impact of the disease.

DoD HIV/AIDS Prevention Program

The Department of Defense HIV/AIDS Prevention Program (DHAPP) is responsible for assisting foreign military partners with the development and implementation of culturally focused, military-specific HIV/AIDS prevention, care, and treatment programs in over 65 countries around the globe. 

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DHA IPM 18-020: Guidance for the Provision of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for Persons at High Risk of Acquiring HIV Infection

Policy

This Defense Health Agency-Interim Procedures Memorandum (DHA-IPM), based on the authority of References (a) and (b), and in accordance with the guidance of References (c) through (f): • Establishes the Military Health System’s (MHS) guidance for the provision of HIV PrEP for persons at high risk of HIV acquisition (ACQ). • Describes the elements and resources required to implement an HIV PrEP program. • Establishes the indications for HIV PrEP, laboratory (lab) testing and monitoring, and prescribing of HIV PrEP. • Provides a link to an HIV PrEP toolkit for providers. • This DHA-IPM is effective immediately; it will be converted to a DHA-Procedural Instruction. This DHA-IPM will expire effective 12 months from the date of issue.

U.S. Military HIV Research Program

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12/8/2017

The U.S. Military HIV Research Program (MHRP) is at the forefront of the battle against HIV to protect U.S. troops from infection and to reduce the global impact of the disease.

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HIV infection is a threat of the Department of Defense (DoD) because sexually active service members and their beneficiaries are stationed throughout the U.S. and around the globe, including in areas with high rates of HIV transmission. Fortunately, blood testing and a negative test result for HIV infection are required for entry into military service. All U.S. military service members must undergo testing for HIV infection every 2 years. As a result, the incidence and prevalence of HIV in the DoD remains much lower than in the U.S. civilian population.

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Defense Health Agency to assume oversight of DoD HIV/AIDS Prevention Program

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Routine Screening for HIV Antibodies Among Male Civilian Applicants

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3/24/2017
This graphic shows the results of routine screening for antibodies to Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) among both male civilian applicants for U.S. military service and male service members of the U.S. Armed Forces, active component - Army during  January 2015 through June 2016 surveillance period. 368,369 males out of 463,132 civilian applicants for U.S. military service were tested for antibodies to HIV. Out of 124 civilian applicants that were HIV positive, 114 were male. Throughout the period, seroprevalences were much higher among males than females.  As for U.S. Armed Forces active component, 467,011 male service members out of 548,974 were tested for antibodies to HIV. Out of 120 soldiers that were HIV positive 117 were male. Annual seroprevalences for male active component Army members greatly exceed those of females. During the 2015, on average, one new HIV infection was detected among active duty army soldiers per 5,265 screening tests.  HIV-1 is the cause of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) and has had major impacts on the health of populations and on healthcare systems worldwide. Of 515 active component soldiers diagnosed with HIV infections since 2011, a total of 291 (57%) were still in the military. Get tested and learn more by reading the Medical Surveillance Monthly Report at Health.Mil/MSMR.

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3/3/2017
This graphic shows the results of routine screening for antibodies to Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) among both female civilian applicants for U.S. military service and female service members of the U.S. Armed Forces, active component - Army during  January 2015 through June 2016 surveillance period. 94,763 females out of 463,132 civilian applicants for U.S. military service were tested for antibodies to HIV. Out of 124 civilian applicants that were HIV positive, 10 were female. Throughout the period, seroprevalences were much higher among males than females.  During 2015 – 2016 seroprevalences dropped to zero among female applicants.  As for U.S. Armed Forces active component, 81,963 female service members out of 548,974 were tested for antibodies to HIV. Out of 120 soldiers that were HIV positive 3 were female. Annual seroprevalences for male active component Army members greatly exceed those of females. During the 2015, on average, one new HIV infection was detected among active duty army soldiers per 5,265 screening tests.  HIV-1 is the cause of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) and has had major impacts on the health of populations and on healthcare systems worldwide. Of 515 active component soldiers diagnosed with HIV infections since 2011, a total of 291 (57%) were still in the military. Get tested and learn more by reading the Medical Surveillance Monthly Report at Health.Mil/MSMR.

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June 27th is National HIV Testing Day. HIV-1 infection is a major health importance for the U.S. military. Since the start of HIV-1 military health surveillance analysis during 1990-2013, service members diagnosed with the HIV-1 infection in recent years have remained longer in U.S. Armed Forces.  There were a total of 5,227 new diagnoses in 24-years of surveillance. The August 2015 Medical Surveillance Monthly Report (MSMR) reported that “Estimated median durations of service after initial HIV-1 diagnoses ranged from 2.29 years in Cohort 1 ( 1990-1994) to 3.65 years in Cohort 4 (2005-2009). Thus, in the 15 years between 1990-1994 and 2005-2009, the median durations of service after HIV-1 diagnoses increased by 1.4 years.” Factors contributing to longer service include: •	Availability and effectiveness of HIV treatments •	Decline in stigmas associated with diagnosis of the HIV infection •	Changes in U.S. military policy that allow the LGBT community to serve in its ranks  Note: Service members who are diagnosed with HIV-1 infections, regardless of their sexual orientations, may elect to continue their military service careers.  Get tested today – it’s the only way to know. Early HIV testing helps to prevent transmission and lowers the risk of severe health complications. Follow us on Twitter for more information: @AFHSBPAGE  Also on Twitter: National HIV Testing Day #NHTD

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DoD Directives 6485.02E: DoD Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) Prevention Program (DHAPP) to Support Foreign Militaries

Policy

This directive reissues DoD Directive (DoDD) 6485.02E (Reference (a)) to establish policy and assign responsibilities for DHAPP to support foreign militaries pursuant to Public Law 110-293 (Reference (b)); designates the Secretary of the Navy as the DoD Executive Agent (EA) for DHAPP in accordance with DoDD 5101.1 (Reference (c)); updates the responsibilities for the Coordinating Board for DHAPP (referred to in this directive as the Coordinating Board (CB)), consistent with DoD Instruction (DoDI) 5105.18 (Reference (d)).

DoD Instruction 6485.01: Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) in Military Service Members

Policy

Updates policy for the identification, surveillance, and management of military personnel infected with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and for prevention activities to control transmission of HIV.

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