Improving police training and tackling the fear of HIV

Improving police training and tackling the fear of HIV

‘When asked about the most dangerous aspects of their jobs, neither constable misses a beat. "You can be searching somebody who has HIV/Aids, or hepatitis," says Hawke. "You'll empty a rucksack and it'll be full of uncapped needles. That, for me, is the biggest fear: a fear of infection.” ‘– Guardian article, 26 March 2013 'The police are constantly under attack from the government'. Of all the risks the police face in their day-to-day jobs - attacks from armed criminals, stress, injuries from the physical nature of their jobs – all too often HIV transmission is cited in the media.

Are police at risk of HIV at work?

Are police at risk of HIV at work?

In the press this week there have been a number of reports about a man living with HIV who attacked and bit two police officers in Brighton. The Chief Superintendent commented that the incident reflected the ‘enormous risks that officers experience each and every day.’ But is there really a serious risk of contracting HIV from a bite? And are police officers in danger of HIV transmission when on duty?