Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) causing virus was discovered by Dr Luc Montagnier in France in 1983 and subsequently in the United States also Robert Gallo found it and eventually the virus was called the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).

There are various ways how the virus can be transmitted from one person to another and that include:

  • Sexual intercourse between a person infected by HIV
  • Through transmission of HIV infected blood during transfusion of the blood.
  • Contaminated Skin piercing instruments such as syringes and needles.
  • HIV Transmission from Mother to Child during pregnancy, labour and delivery, and during breast feeding.

HIV can be termed as incurable disease and the virus attacks the immune system of a person.

The Nurses who treats the patients suffering from HIV are known as HIV/AIDS Nurse. These nurses are specially trained in this field, where they care the patients, counseling them to manage the physical, social, and psychological aspects of the disease and by addressing and supporting them to override shame and social stigma, fear, shock and grief, anxiety and depression and other physical, social, and psychological issues. They also inform the patients about the treatment procedures, provide treatments and administer medications. Their caring process is more directed toward minimizing the pain and maximizing independence of the infected patient, and connecting infected person to support groups.

The specialized education and training prepares them to educate individuals, families, community, society and public on various aspects of the deadly disease, precaution and prevention measures that can prevent the spread of the disease. In addition, it is also their responsibility to provide emotional and moral support to infected individual, loved ones and families of the patient. The excellent communication and convincing skills are the prime qualities of a HIV/AIDS Nurse.

HIV/AID Nurse Duties

The primary duty of the HIV/AIDS Nurse includes:

  • Offer Health Cares to HIV/AIDs infected patients.
  • Educate loved ones, families and patients ways to cope and live with the disease.
  • Working closely and collaborating with the health care professionals and other groups related to HIV/AIDs field.
  • Continuous monitoring of the patients health conditions.
  • Referring other health care professionals if deemed necessary.
  • Make terminally ill patient as comfortable as possible.

HIV/AIDS Nurse Work Places

These nurses works in various types of health care settings including hospitals, community health care centers, Home Health, HIV/AIDS Care Centers, Private Clinics and other facilities, where the these infected patients are given treatments.

Education & Certification

The initial step to become a HIV/AIDS Nurse is to get credential of registered nurse by completing RN Program and passing of the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) developed and administered NCLEX-RN (the National Council Licensure Examination) Exam for RN Licensure and credential. The next step requires gaining working experience of minimum 2 years in HIV/AIDS related area that may include research, education or practicing in clinically.

After you meet these eligibility requirements, you can appear in the AIDS Certified Registered Nurse (ACRN) examination offered by the the Association of Nurses in Aids Care (ANAC) and the HIV/AIDS Nursing Certification Board (HANCB). Though, the certification is voluntary but still it is highly valued and counted as a specialty in HIV/AIDs.