The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource
Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App 
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
Ask the Experts About

Workplace and Insurance IssuesWorkplace and Insurance Issues
Rollover images to visit our other forums!
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

giving first aid, is there a risk of contracting HIV?
Dec 18, 1997

Many people I know won't give frst aid because they're afraid of HIV. Is there really a risk? Have there been any cases contracted this way?

Response from Ms. Breuer

When first aiders use universal precautions (that is, treating all blood as if it is infectious and always using a barrier when blood is present), first aid is very safe. To date, there are no confirmed cases of HIV infection among paramedics, police officers, firefighters or citizen first aiders. There are 9 cases under investigation at the CDC, and perhaps a few of those will emerge as confirmed cases, but we are well into the second decade of the epidemic without a confirmed case. When people refuse to give first aid out of fear of HIV, I urge them to imagine one of their own family members on the floor somewhere, needing first aid, and how much they would want someone to step in and help.

Nancy Breuer

I punctured my self with an
Questions regarding casual transmission in the workplace

  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary



This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.

Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.

Review our complete terms of use and copyright notice.

Powered by ExpertViewpoint