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Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) Infection

Queensland Health Guidelines for Public Health Units

Revision History

 Version Date Changes
 1.0December 2010 Full revision of guideline. 

Infectious Agent

The agent is the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) - types 1 and 2.

Notification and Reporting Criteria

Laboratory notification only. Laboratory reporting to NOCS.

For case definitions see

Public Health Significance and Occurrence

Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) was first recognised in 1981 and HIV type 1 was isolated in 1984. HIV infection is currently pandemic. It is estimated that at the end of 2003, 40 million people worldwide were living with HIV; the majority being in developing countries particularly sub-Saharan Africa. In developing countries, heterosexual transmission is the most common means of transmission. Transmission and acquisition of HIV is facilitated by co-infection with other sexually transmissible infections.

In Queensland and Australia, the majority of infections occur in men who have sex with men. There has been a generally increasing trend in notifications in Queensland and Australia since 1998.

Clinical Features

See Queensland Sexual Health Clinical Management Guidelines

Mode of Transmission

Person-to-person by sexual contact; sharing of contaminated needles and syringes; transfusion of infected blood or its components; transplantation of HIV infected organs or tissues; from mother to child before, during or shortly after birth, or via breast milk.

Investigation and Screening

For investigation see Queensland Sexual Health Clinical Management Guidelines

For screening of at risk population groups see Queensland Sexual Health Clinical Management Guidelines



See Queensland Sexual Health Clinical Management Guidelines

See Queensland Health Protocol for the Management of People with HIV who Place Others at Risk


See Queensland Sexual Health Clinical Management Guidelines

For post-exposure prophylaxis see Queensland Health Infection Control Guidelines – Guidelines for the Management of Occupational and Non-occupational Exposures to Blood and Body Fluids

Preventive Measures

  • Education - high risk groups and young people
  • Condoms
  • Facilitate risk reduction for IV drug users
  • Screening of blood products and other human tissues/fluids for transplantation/transfusion
  • Standard precautions eg. gloves, sharps disposal.

Contact Details of Queensland Health Sexual Health Services


Australasian Society for HIV Medicine, 2006. Australasian Contact Tracing Manual (3rd ed).

Cohen J and Powderly WG, 2003. Infectious Diseases (2nd ed). Mosby: Washington.

Heymann, D (Ed), 2008. Control of Communicable Diseases Manual (19th ed). American Public Health Association: Washington.

Holmes KK et al, 2008.  Sexually Transmitted Diseases (4th ed). McGraw, New York.

McMillan A and Scott GR. 2008. Sexually Transmitted Infections (2nd ed.)

Queensland Health, Communicable Diseases Branch, Queensland Sexual Health Clinical Management
Guidelines 2010

World Health Organization. 2003. Guidelines for the Management of Sexually Transmitted Infections.

Last updated: 24 December 2010