Undetectable = Untransmittable   

Celebrate Love U=U
Moses Supercharger with
the Stigmaless Band
Kampala, Uganda
Click on the photos to scroll through examples of Community Partner U=U campaigns.
For an extensive list of U=U messaging from around the world see our U=U Message Guide
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A new customizable social marketing campaign to educate about U=U and encourage engagement in care. 

Q: What would you say to HIV information providers who are withholding this [U=U] information from people with HIV?

 

A: "It is very, very clear that the risk is zero. If you are on suppressive ART you are sexually noninfectious. The time for excuses is over."

 

Dr. Alison Rodger, lead author of PARTNER studies at the International AIDS Conference - AIDS 2018 presentation  (July, 2018) 

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CDC Letter Approving Usage of U=U Communications

August, 2019

#UequalsU

  • "Last month, the global medical and scientific community at the forefront of HIV research and care came together in Paris for the ninth International AIDS Society Conference, where they announced – unequivocally – that an undetectable HIV viral load means HIV is untransmittable." Dr. Julio Montaner, UBC-Killam Professor of Medicine; UBC-St. Paul’s Hospital Foundation chair in AIDS Research Editorial (August, 2017) 

  • "U=U is a simple but hugely important campaign based on a solid foundation of scientific evidence. It has already been successful in influencing public opinion, causing more people with HIV (and their friends and families) to comprehend that they can live long, healthy lives, have children, and never have to worry about passing on their infection to others. The CDC officially backing the science behind the campaign is another key step towards U=U being the most important message of 2017 in the fight against HIV." The Lancet (November, 2017)

  • "U=U is an essential component for ending the epidemic. When people learn that U=U, they are more likely to get tested and to start and stay on treatment. Staying on ART brings health benefits to PWH, their partners, and the general public." Maureen M. Goodenow, Ph.D., Director, NIH Office of AIDS Research (June 2018)

What is U=U?

Prevention Access Campaign and a community of people living with HIV collaborated with the leading researchers on HIV sexual transmission to answer a fundamental question about living with HIV and having an undetectable viral load: Will I pass on HIV to my sexual partner?  

 

The science is clear. People living with HIV can feel confident that if they have an undetectable viral load and take their medications as prescribed, they will not pass on HIV to sexual partners (Undetectable = Untransmittable U=U).

 

U=U offers freedom and hope. For many people living with HIV and their partners, U=U opens up social, sexual, and reproductive choices they never thought would be possible. It is an unprecedented opportunity to transform the lives of people with HIV and the field:

 

  • Reduces the shame and fear of sexual transmission and opens up possibilities for conceiving children without alternative means of insemination.

 

  • Dismantles HIV stigma on the community, clinical, and personal level.

 

  • Encourages people living with HIV to start and stay on treatment to keep them and their partners healthy. 

 

  • Offers a strong public health argument for universal access to diagnostics, treatment, and care to save lives and bring us closer to ending the epidemic.

 

However, the majority of millions of people living with HIV do not know U=U, and many do not have access to the diagnostics, treatment, and care they need to achieve and maintain an undetectable viral load. There are still confusing messages, outdated websites, and uninformed policymakers and healthcare workers who are not comfortable sharing this information, don't yet know about it, or don't yet realize the significance of it. 

 

Prevention Access Campaign's U=U campaign has grown into a global movement of activists, researchers, and Community Partners that are changing what it means to live with HIV by ensuring the groundbreaking science reaches the people it was intended to benefit.

 

NOTE: An undetectable viral load is typically under 40 copies/ml depending on the diagnostic tests. However, studies show a person living with HIV on antiretroviral therapy (ART) with a viral load of 200 copies/ml or less also cannot sexually transmit HIV. This is called being "virally suppressed." For the purposes of the U=U campaign and any Prevention Access Campaign materials, the term “undetectable” is used synonymously with the term “virally suppressed,” meaning a person living with HIV with a viral load of less than 200 copies/ml cannot transmit HIV. 

 

What if my viral load is not undetectable? Viral load does not equal Value 

People living with HIV are more than just their lab results, and value isn't dictated by viral load. No one living with HIV is a danger.  If you are living with HIV and you have a detectable viral load, there are highly effective HIV prevention options for safer sex including condoms, and in some parts of the world, PrEP for your HIV-negative partners, which can be used individually or in combination. Everyone living with HIV regardless of viral load can have full and healthy social, sexual, and reproductive lives. 

Consult with your medical provider about the options available to you for your health and the health of your partners. For more information, see The Third U=Universal.

We invite you to take part in the movement and the message! 

 

  • Become a U=U Community Partner - Join the growing global movement of over 950 organizations from nearly 100 countries that have pledged to share the U=U message in ways that work for their communities. To endorse the U=U Consensus Statement and sign up your organization, please visit our Community Partner page.

 

  • Join U=U on Social Media - Healthline, one of the fastest growing consumer health information websites (more than 65 million monthly visitors), honored the U=U campaign as 2017 "Best HIV Patient Advocacy Organization,” and 2016 "Best Use of Social Media in HIV Advocacy" thanks to our strong global U=U social network. Please join the U=U Facebook Group, follow U=U on Twitter, use the hashtag #UequalsU to take part in the message and movement. 

 

 

  • Write about U=U - The U=U campaign was awarded the #1 blog of 2016 by POZ.com, and received extensive coverage in a wide range of mainstream media outlets including CBS Evening News, The Washington Post, CNN, China Global Television, CBC Canada, US News & World Report, Newsweek, Reuters, and Medical Brief - Africa's Medical Media Digest.  Get in touch with us if you'd like to share your story on the U=U blog

 

  • Donate - U=U has been led almost entirely by volunteers for over two years. Please support the message and the movement that is changing what it means to live with HIV.  Thank you! 

 ​​

 

Downloadable Presentation

 

NAM aidsmap /

British HIV Association

 

Video & Deck  

"Talking to Patients about U=U

 

Featuring Matthew Hodson,

Executive Director of NAM aidsmap

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CDC Global U=U Technical Brief

Downloadable U=U summaries & source documents 

HIV Medicine Association (HIVMA) - U=U for Providers (10/18)
UNAIDS- U=U Explainer (07/18
 
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NIH - 10 Things to Know About HIV Viral Suppression (11/17)

NIAID News and JAMA Article, January 2019

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NIH OAR Update, June 2018

LINKAGES- fhi360 U=U Fact Sheet, (01/19)
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The Lancet: PARTNER2 Results
May, 2019
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CLICK FOR MORE 

U=U Resources, Fact Sheets, Infographics, Music, Videos, and  More...

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NIH Director Francis Collins: "Treatment is Prevention" January 2019

 

FAQ from the NYC Department of Health

June, 2018 

Fact Sheet

from i-base  

September, 2018 

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NOTE:   An undetectable or fully suppressed viral load only prevents HIV sexual transmission. Condoms help prevent HIV as well as other STIs and pregnancy. The HIV prevention method you choose may be different depending upon your sexual practices and relationships. For instance, if you’re having sex with multiple partners or in a non-monogamous relationship, you might consider using PrEP to prevent HIV and/or condoms to help prevent HIV as well as other STIs. U=U has not been proven for breast-feeding or needle sharing. 
Thank you to the researchers who have been an integral part of the U=U movement long before there was a campaign: 
 
Thank you to the researchers who drafted the U=U consensus statement in 2016, launching the U=U movement: Dr. Myron Cohen, Dr. Andrew Grulich, Dr. Jens Lundgren, and Dr. Pietro Vernazza.  Thank you to the pioneering Dr. Demetre C. Daskalakis (NYC Department of Health & Mental Hygiene) and Dr. Michael Brady (Terrence Higgins Trust), the first public health official and medical director to endorse U=U and ignite the movement in the U.S. and UK. 
 
Thank you to our esteemed colleagues at the U.S. federal health departments for their thoughtful and timely review of the science and meaningful engagement in the process: Dr. Richard Wolitski, Dr. Jonathan Mermin, Dr. Eugene McCray, Dr. David Purcell, Dr. John Brooks and teams. 
 
We are tremendously grateful for the global leadership of Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Carl Dieffenbach at NIAID who spoke out unequivocally in support of U=U in advance of the U.S federal health departments and most of the world.  Thank you to Anne Rancourt and the team at NIAID who provided invaluable strategic and communications advice as well as critical communications tools since the beginning of the campaign when most of the world was silent.  Thank you to Dr. Maureen M. Goodenow for declaring the NIH Office of AIDS Research's unequivocal support of U=U.
 
Thank you to Dr. Alison Rodger and the PARTNER executive committee for your extraordinary groundbreaking work and for going out of your way to support and pay tribute to U=U and Prevention Access Campaign in your press release and presentations at AIDS 2018 and your ongoing work.  Thank you to Dr. Linda-Gail Bekker for leading the International AIDS Society to support U=U. 
 
Special thank you to the pioneering Dr. Julio Montaner for developing the concept of Treatment as Prevention (TasP) the foundation upon which U=U is based.  We are tremendously grateful to Dr. Pietro Vernazza, the author of the groundbreaking Swiss Statement, for his bold advocacy to greatly improve the lives of people living with HIV. Dr. Vernazza and the Swiss Statement are finally being vindicated today. 
 
Thank you to the thousands of participants in the studies dating back to 1998.  Your courage and commitment have forever transformed lives and the field. 
 
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Banner images feature Love to Love Organization (Uganda); ACCM (Canada); and Housing Works (USA) and Red Ribbon Istanbul (Turkey) at International AIDS Society Conference 2017 (France); other images from Place Tokyo (Japan), Apoyo Positivo  (Spain), and tattoo courtesy of Victor Claros (El Salvador). 
The information provided on Prevention Access Campaign is intended to support rather than replace consultation with a healthcare professional. Always consult a healthcare professional for medical advice, diagnosis, and treatment about your particular situation. 
Prevention Access Campaign is fiscally sponsored by Social & Environmental Entrepreneurs, a 501 (c) 3 public charity, and formerly by Housing Works.