© 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited.Purpose: This paper aims to determine the knowledge and attitudes of the physicians regarding human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), to emphasize that these patients exist and they will exist in the future and to raise awareness so as to prevent that their rights to treatment are revoked. Design/methodology/approach: The survey was conducted via a link sent through an online system. Random physicians from 81 cities of the country were invited to the survey. The survey has 41 questions regarding knowledge and attitudes in total, including epidemiological information such as age, gender and title. Findings: A total of 3,107 physicians has voluntarily participated in the study. In total, 2,195 (70.7%) are internal physicians and 912 (29.3%) are surgical physicians among the participant physicians. In total, 1,452 (46.7%) of the participants are specialist physicians, 608 (19.6%) of the participants are practising physician and the rest of it is physician assistants, academicians and dentists, respectively. Originality/value: In this study, it has been found out that the physicians have a lack of knowledge on HIV/AIDS and they adopt a discriminatory attitude towards HIV-positive persons. HIV-positive patients who are exposed to discrimination and scared of being uncovered refrain from applying to hospitals for treatment, which puts public health into jeopardy due to the high viral load and these patients are faced with difficulties in coping with both medical and emotional load of the disease.