Myths about HIV transmission
Knowing how HIV is not transmitted, and educating community members about the myths that some may believe (see Box 20.1 and Figure 20.7), helps to increase the inclusion of PLHIV in society, and reduce the stigmatisation and discrimination they often experience.
Box 20.1 Myths about HIV transmission
HIV is not transmitted by:
- tears, saliva, sweat or urine
- personal contacts — kisses on the mouth, hugging, handshakes
- social contact — at work, in school, in cafés and restaurants
- air or water — sneezing, coughing or swimming
- contact with common items — pens, toilets, towels, sheets, soap
- insects — mosquito bites or bites by other insects.
In Study Sessions 25–27, we demonstrate how understanding the modes of transmission of HIV is the basis for implementing prevention measures against HIV infection at the community level, and for healthcare providers, including yourself.