National HIV Testing Day is June 27th. Roughly 50,000 new cases of HIV are diagnosed each year in the United States. The Northeast has the second highest rate of infection, with 15.9 out of 100,000 people diagnosed. That is approximately 9,000 people. All adults should know their HIV status. Being proactive about getting tested and maintaining your health helps to protect your health, your partners, and our entire community.
The testing process has changed remarkably in the past 20 years. Previously, walk-in testing involved a blood draw and a wait time that could be as long as two weeks for results. While some circumstances still involve blood testing, most testing these days involves no needles or blood. Tests are done by swiping the gums with a special test swab, and results are available in 20 minutes. At WYH, tests are available through your medical provider at any visit, or by walk-in on Tuesdays from 12pm-3pm or Thursdays from 9am-12pm in our CPTS office. In addition to testing, we also provide education on ways to protect yourself and free safer sex supplies of all types.
Getting tested is important for all adults, not just some adults. New York State now recommends HIV testing be part of every regular physical exam. Testing is the only way you can definitely know your HIV status. By being tested, you empower yourself to make strong, healthy decisions for your health and your family. By starting treatment early, you are likely to be able to maintain your health for decades to come. Let’s make June 27, 2015 the most active National HIV Testing day in history. Take the test, and take control today.