BE PATIENT--Under Construction

Carmen Pineiro, LMHC

  Better Pathways


HIV and Prevention

Posted by on November 3, 2015 at 6:40 PM

There are about 50,000 new HIV infections reported in the U.S. each year. Florida has risen to the number one spot nationwide. Out of 3,143 counties in the U.S., Florida has two counties in the top 5 with new infections. The counties are Miami in #1, and Ft. Lauderdale #2. New York and San Francisco which were always at the top 10 have gone down to #12 and #29 respectively.

According to the latest statistics reported by the Center for Disease and Control (CDC), In Miami-Dade County, new HIV infections among women are declining and increasing among men. New infections among African Americans are decreasing, Hispanics are increasing while it’s static, or about the same, among Whites. The two largest age groups with an increasing number of new infections are those between 20-29 and 30-39. Men who have sex with men are the biggest group with new infections followed by heterosexual drug users.

South Florida is at a high-risk for HIV transmission. Various prevention methods can be used to reduce transmission of HIV. Prevention is equally important for those who are HIV positive or negative. Prevention begins with getting tested and knowing your status. Once you know your status, if positive, you can get linked to care and begin treatment. If negative, it can be an opportunity to think about avoiding potentially high-risk situations, such as having unprotected sex.

HIV is acquired by sharing needles, syringes, rinse water, or other equipment (works) used to prepare injection drugs and sexual contact with someone who is HIV positive. Condoms prevent This exchange of bodily fluids such as blood, semen (cum), pre-seminal fluid (pre-cum), rectal fluids, vaginal fluids while having sex. Also, condoms prevent the transmission of others STD’s such as syphilis, gonorrhea, herpes and chlamydia. Latex condoms provide the best protection. Polyurethane or polyisoprene can also be used if the individual is allergic to latex. Natural skin condoms are porous and are not effective since infections can pass through the pores. Water-based lubricants together with the condoms can be used to prevent the condom breakage. Oil-based lubricants should be avoided. The oil can weaken the latex and cause breakage. In addition to male condoms, there are female condoms that are as effective. Depending which type to use is a personal choice and can be decided amongst the couple.

Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) are two prevention methods using antiretroviral (ART) medication to reduce the risk of HIV infection. The medical definition of prophylaxis is “measures designed to preserve health and prevent the spread of disease.” Doctors prescribe PrEP and PEP to individuals who are HIV-negative and at high risk of exposure to HIV. PrEP is taken BEFORE exposure to the HIV virus, for example, couples where one partner is HIV-positive and the other one is HIV negative. PEP is taken AFTER and within 72 hours of possible exposure to the HIV virus, for example after a sexual assault, or a broken condom. If exposed to HIV, these antiretroviral medications interfere with HIV’s ability to copy itself inside the body. PrEP should be taken every day, and the person should return to the medical provider every three months for follow-up and necessary blood work. PEP is taken for a short period immediately following a high-risk situation. PrEP and PEP should not be a substitute for condom use, risk reduction or a form of primary prevention.

No prevention method is 100% effective. A combination of preventive measures provides better effects in reducing the transmission of HIV. What works for one person may not work for another. The important thing is that you find a method that fits your needs and that you are comfortable with while engaging in sex.


"Infectious Disease Services." HIV Surveillance. Accessed November 4, 2015.


AIDS Prevention. Accessed November 4, 2015.


Categories: HIV, Awareness & Prevention

Post a Comment


Oops, you forgot something.


The words you entered did not match the given text. Please try again.

Already a member? Sign In

1 Comment

Reply estuamn
7:49 AM on April 7, 2021 - cialis pills for sale