HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) is the virus that can cause AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome). Left untreated, HIV can weaken a person’s immune system over time by disabling the body’s ability to fight infections. Treatment of HIV infection has never been better. It’s more effective, easier to manage – one pill per day for many patients – with fewer side effects. Early treatment can provide a longer and better quality of life. When viral activity is suppressed, it can lower a person’s infectiousness and greatly reduce the risk of transmission. Compared to most of the U.S., Vermont has a relatively small number of people living with HIV. Most Vermonters with HIV are in medical care, take medications and are virally suppressed.