Is receiving HIV treatment likely to affect my work?

The combination therapy for HIV requires a number of activities. These include a doctor's check-up every three months, or more frequently during the early stages of treatment. This will be mainly during working hours if at an NHS clinic. The therapy will also involve taking pills to a rigorous schedule.

Anti-HIV drugs can cause side-effects during the first weeks of treatment. Some have serious implications, and some can be long term.

There can be psychological and emotional implications of taking HIV treatment such as stress, trauma, and depression.

You may need to consider long-term effects. Anti-HIV drugs have to be taken indefinitely and continuously. And HIV can become resistant to one or more drugs, lessening the effects of the treatment. The risk of resistance increases when the treatment is not taken regularly at strict schedules.

The Terrence Higgins Trust has guidance on taking medication at work on its website.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.

What is WorkSmart?

A career coach that works for everyone.


Enjoy bite-sized activities delivered to you every week.

Lightbulb brain

Equip yourself with essential skills to be the best you yet.


Get the guidance you need to stay focused and reach your goals.

Worksmart circle