Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is passed from person to person primarily through unprotected sex and sharing of injection equipment and needles. A person can spread HIV to their baby during pregnancy, birth or breastfeeding. HIV transmission can be prevented, and the risk of infection greatly reduced, through changes in behaviors or taking actions that can interrupt transmission.
Some interventions help people who are living with the virus avoid transmitting HIV to others. Other methods help HIV-negative people prevent getting the virus. Sexually active people can help stop or reduce the spread of HIV. They can postpone sex, reduce their number of sex partners or use condoms consistently and correctly. People who inject drugs can stop HIV transmission if they never share needles, syringes or injection drug paraphernalia.