Illinois HIV Care Connect introduces the Treatment As Prevention Quiz

Serving all of Illinois' 102 counties, Illinois HIV Care Connect has lead agency offices located in Rockford, Peoria, Springfield, Belleville, Murphysboro, Champaign and Chicago. We can help you localize this story - contact Ray Valek, ray@valekco.com, 708-352-8695, for assistance and sources.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

If You Are Living with HIV in Illinois, Take the Treatment as Prevention Quiz

HIV treatment can prevent the transmission of HIV to others

Springfield, Ill. – Sept. 19, 2017 – To help people living with HIV understand how HIV treatment can prevent the transmission of HIV to others, Illinois HIV Care Connect introduced the Treatment As Prevention Quiz and educational content. People living with HIV are encouraged to take the quiz!

By taking the short quiz, people living with HIV can gauge their current understanding of HIV treatment as prevention, and then be directed to educational content to learn more.

For example, HIV-positive individuals who achieve viral suppression, or a low level of HIV in the blood, have little chance, and possibly zero chance, of transmitting HIV to others, according to the results of two recent medical studies – HPTN 052 and the PARTNER study. Similarly, pregnant or breast-feeding women who achieve viral suppression have virtually no chance of passing HIV onto their babies.

However, until people living with HIV achieve viral suppression, by gradually reducing the amount of HIV in the blood by taking anti-HIV medications, practicing safe sex remains important to prevent HIV transmission.

Due to treatment as prevention advancements, getting to zero HIV cases in Illinois is now an achievable goal. Illinois is among several states and cities that have begun “Getting to Zero” initiatives to gather community input, engage key stakeholders, and develop a framework for a HIV treatment and prevention plan.

Public health officials believe that promoting the preventive benefits of HIV treatment can increase the percentage of people living with HIV who have achieved viral suppression. Right now, only 30 percent of the HIV-positive population have reached viral suppression, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and that’s because only 37 percent of people living with HIV are successfully staying in care by making medical appointments twice a year and regularly taking their medications.

Illinois HIV Care Connect is promoting the Treatment as Prevention Quiz using text, graphics and videos on the Illinois HIV Care Connect website (hivcareconnect.com) and on its Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Google+, Pinterest, and Instagram social media platforms.

Illinois HIV Care Connect is a statewide network providing medical case management, health care and support services to people living with HIV. Seven lead agencies coordinate the services provided to eight Illinois regions through the program. About 36,000 Illinois residents are estimated to be HIV-positive. Illinois HIV Care Connect has lead agency offices located in Rockford, Peoria, Springfield, Belleville, Murphysboro, Champaign and Chicago serve people living with HIV in all of Illinois’ 102 counties.

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