National HIV Testing Day: Then and now

Jun 28, 2018, 20:28
National HIV Testing Day: Then and now

June 27th is National HIV Testing Day and this brings an opportunity for all nurses across the nation to spread the word about the importance of getting an HIV test and to encourage patients and their family members to stay in care, and to support HIV prevention.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that all individuals 13-64 years old be tested for HIV at least once during their lifetime, and persons at increased risk for HIV infection be tested at least annually.

"HIV doesn't necessarily cause symptoms in its early period and that's why people need to know their status". Additional information for patients and health professionals on National HIV Testing Day, basic testing information, and guidelines for testing can be found on the CDC's website.

Visit https://www.greaterthan.org/free-hiv-testing-walgreens-2018/ for Walgreen's testing locations. Today, this evidence gives us an important new reason to get tested: if you know you are positive, take HIV medication as prescribed, and achieve and maintain an undetectable viral load, you have effectively no risk of transmitting HIV to your sexual partners. Dr. Kevin Sherin is director of the county Department of Health. According to The AIDS Institute, there are rapid HIV tests available for those who don't want to wait a week or two for the results.

"The biggest change is that we have lot more tools as far as living with HIV and preventing HIV", he said.

The Pacific Pride Foundation suggests people get HIV testing regularly.

"One of the biggest ways HIV is transmitted is through sharing of needles, not only in DE but there's other states in this area that have seen an increase because people are sharing needles, they're not cleaning them".

Healthy Living Project at 95th and Antioch in Overland Park has free testing from 11 a.m.to 7 p.m. Wednesday. "So, if you screen for diabetes once a year, you should add in HIV screening". Daily PrEP use can lower the risk of getting HIV from sex by more than 90% and 70% for injection drug users.

"The stigmas that have been associated with HIV have made people not come forward to test", said Dr. Nnamdi Ndubuka, medical health officer with the Northern Intertribal Health Authority.

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