Fine line here.
HIV status of the living patient should remain confidential except under certain circumstances (not a global application):
1 - If a physician knows
that a third-party is being endangered
2 - The physician has failed
to persuade the patient with HIV to disclose to said third-party
3 - The physician has contacted the proper authorities and they have failed
to contact said third party
THEN, the physician may reveal to said third-party the HIV status.
But, the physician has a duty to maintain confidentiality of the patient after death
Some state statutes mandate that the physician provide the contact's name to the state health agency; the state health agency then notifies the contact
(2) Some states give the physician the choice of notifying either the state health agency or the third-party contacts directly
(3) Other states make such disclosures to a state agency optional. The tremendous variation of these provisions indicates that physicians should always seek advice from public health departments and their own attorneys to understand their legal responsibilities.
But, as previously pointed out, the physician has a duty to maintain confidentiality of the patient after death