Making Risk Reduction Work

In 2003, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Health Resources and Services Administration, the National Institutes of Health, and the HIV Medicine Association of the Infectious Diseases Society of America put forth the following recommendations to better incorporate HIV prevention efforts into the medical care of persons living with HIV. These recommendations will be explored in greater detail throughout this module.

  • Routinely screen for transmission risk behaviors, STIs, and pregnancy.
  • Provide brief behavioral risk reduction interventions in the office setting and refer selected higher-risk patients for more intensive prevention interventions.
  • Facilitate notification and subsequent counseling of sex and needle-sharing partners of infected persons either by the patient alone, in collaboration with the patient, or through the local health department.

To accomplish these goals, providers should incorporate risk reduction as part of a comprehensive treatment plan (see Toolbox). Any plan to address risk reduction with HIV-infected youth should focus on:

  • 1. Sexual risk reduction
  • 2. Partner disclosure
  • 3. Addressing psychosocial cofactors