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Undectable, Can I pass an insurance lab test for aids?
Oct 10, 2002

I was diagnoised HIV+ in 98' with a viral load over a millon and a CD4 of 40. At one point my CD4 was at three. I have since then, gotten my CD4 up to 612, and my viral load has been undectable since 99'. Can I pass the insurance lab test? or will any company insure me with these kinds of results?

Response from Ms. Breuer

Congratulations! From 3 to 612 is a great leap. You must be taking the medications exactly as they are prescribed, which is the biggest secret to improving your CD4 count and bringing down your viral load. Keep doing it!

Now the questions: "undetectable" only means that we do not currently have a viral load test that measures viral loads as low as yours. Your blood will always test HIV-positive, because the current HIV tests are antibody tests, and your body is producing antibodies to HIV.

As to employment-related blood tests: there is no legitimate reason for an employer to test you for HIV. Since an employer cannot use the results legally to fire you or otherwise limit your rights, what would be the point? If you apply to a company that has a group health insurance or life insurance policy, you become part of the group, normally just by signing up. If they do insist on a physical or a health questionnaire that asks you pointed questions that would reveal your HIV status, please do not cooperate before reading the many responses on this forum to questions about how to handle health questionnaires.

Okay? One great way to celebrate the new lease on life you've been given is to live a normal life, keep your diagnosis to yourself in the workplace, and enjoy the benefits everyone else at work enjoys. If you hit a real snag and can't find the answer in the questions my colleagues and I have already answered on this site, please write again!

Best of luck to you.

HIV/AIDS in the Workplace
Small company group insurance and disclosure

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