HIV tests 'cannot determine a partner's sexual health status'

Couples have been reminded that it is important both individuals take an HIV test even if one of them receives a negative result.

This was the advice given by the Standard's agony aunt, who explained that even if people have sex without a condom it can be possible in some cases for one person to have the virus, while the other fails to contract it.

"Your HIV test result reveals only your HIV status and not that of someone else. Your negative test result does not indicate whether or not your partner has HIV," the writer stated.

As a result, it was suggested that both partners should visit a clinic to undergo screening if they are concerned about their sexual health.

HIV tests look for antibodies in the blood to determine whether individuals have contracted the virus.

In the vast majority of cases (97 per cent) HIV antibodies are produced by the body within two to 12 weeks of exposure.