HIV/STD Prevention Through Family Planning Services
The Harris County Public Health & Environmental Services (HCPHES) Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) / Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD) Prevention Program provides education, counseling, and testing services to help prevent the spread of HIV and STDs.
HIV and STDs – General Information
The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is an infection that passes from one person to another through sexual contact or contact with infected blood or body fluids. When people are infected with HIV, the virus causes serious damage to their immune systems, making it easy for them to catch other infections or to develop certain kinds of cancer. The most advanced stage of HIV infection is called Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, or AIDS, and it can be deadly. HIV infection cannot be cured, but now people infected with HIV can take medication and live longer lives if the infection is found early enough.
Besides HIV, there are many other sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs). Some of them can be cured, like gonorrhea, chlamydia, and syphilis. Others cannot be cured, like Hepatitis B, herpes and human papillomavirus. But all of them can cause serious damage to people’s health, even threatening their lives.
For more information on HIV and STDs:
The HCPHES HIV/STD Family Planning Clinics offers:
HIV/STD counseling and testing services are offered to patients accessing Family Planning services within the four HCPHES clinics
When needed, patient referrals are made to partner agencies for:
Sex and needle sharing partners of patients with HIV should be notified so that they can receive follow-up services. Two ways to let partners know that they have shared needles or sex with an HIV positive patient are: