The mission of the Austin CBC Initiative is to improve the quality of life for individuals impacted by HIV/AIDS. The purpose of our initiative is to restore hope, improve health, and impart knowledge to those who are otherwise hard to reach in communities of color.
Want to know more about Austin CBC Initiative? Feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. Call 773.826.9928 or you can reach us by fax at 773.826.9930. You can also email us at Chamille.firstname.lastname@example.org
HIV101 / INTRODUCTION TO HIV/AIDS
FIRST THINGS FIRST
HIV is not AIDS. HIV is a virus that if left untreated, can cause AIDS. Because of advancements in treatment and testing, it is a rare case that HIV progresses to AIDS at all. It is okay to combine the two words (i.e. HIV/AIDS) but you should never use the word “AIDS” to mean HIV. Now what exactly is HIV?
WHAT IS HIV?
The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is the virus that causes HIV infection. When infected, the virus replicates and can attack the infection-fighting T-cells ¹ of the body’s immune system. Loss of T-cells makes it difficult for the immune system to fight infections. If left untreated, HIV can progress and cause Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), the most advanced stage of infection.
HOW DOES ONE GET IT?
You can contract HIV through mutual blood or semen contact. This most often occurs during unprotected sex or by sharing needles during injection drug use. There are also cases where a mother passes the virus on to her newborn or transmits the virus via breastfeeding.