HIV in the workplace

Ex-Wales rugby captain, Gareth Thomas spoke out at the weekend revealing that he is HIV positive. He says he wants to break the stigma around the condition.

Since the doom and gloom adverts of the 1980’s knowledge and treatment about HIV and AIDS has progressed enormously.

In 2014, UNAIDS established the global 90-90-90 targets.

This means: 

  • 90% of people living with HIV are diagnosed.
  • 90% of those diagnosed are on HIV treatment. 
  • 90% of those receiving treatment are virally suppressed (undetectable).

The UK has surpassed these targets. In 2017, it was estimated that there are 101,600 people living with HIV and:

  • 92% of these people are diagnosed – this still means that around 1 in 12 people living with HIV in the UK do not know that they have the virus.
  • 98% of people diagnosed with HIV in the UK are on treatment. 
  • 97% of those on treatment are virally suppressed, which means they can’t pass the virus on.

Of all the people living with HIV in the UK (diagnosed and undiagnosed), 87% are virally suppressed.

How does this impact on the workplace?

An employer is required to make reasonable adjustments for anyone that is considered disabled under the Equality Act. It maybe that an employee who is HIV positive requires no adjustments at work, but some may.

If you are unsure how to make reasonable adjustments or what those adjustments should be a good Occupational Health referral will assist you in managing employees who are living with HIV.

Statistics from National Aids Trust 2019 website

Find out more about our Occupational Health and Health Surveillance services.