June 27, 2013 is National HIV Testing Day. This year marks the 19th annual National HIV Testing Day and getting tested has never been easier.
The National Prevention Task Force, a panel of medical experts, recommends that every adult between the ages of 15 and 65 get an HIV test.
In April 2013, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) released HIV testing recommendations that everyone aged 15 to 65 should be screened for HIV infection; teens younger than age 15 and adults older than 65 also should be screened if they are at increased risk for HIV infection; and all pregnant women, including women in labor who do not know if they are infected with HIV, should be screened for HIV infection.
Too many people don’t know they have HIV.
In the United States, nearly 1.1 million people are living with HIV, and almost one in five don’t know they are infected. Getting tested is the first step to finding out if you have HIV. If you have HIV, getting medical care and taking medicines regularly helps you live a longer, healthier life and also lowers the chances of passing HIV on to other.
The Centers For Disease Control (CDC) recommends an HIV test once a year for people at increased risk—such as gay and bisexual men, people who inject drugs, or people with multiple sex partners.
Regular testing allows people who have HIV to know their status, get life-saving treatment and care, and prevent HIV transmission to others.
Testing for HIV has never been easier and health advocates are using this National Day to help spread the word.
You can ask your Doctor to administer the test and under the Affordable Care Act of 2010, most insurers are now required to cover this test at no additional cost.
Two FDA-approved tests are available online or from local drugstores: a rapid testing kit that provides results in 20 minutes using a swab of oral fluid from your gums, and a kit that involves collecting a finger stick blood sample and sending it to a licensed laboratory, then calling in later for results. In both cases, testing is anonymous, and the manufacturer provides confidential counseling and referral to care.
Free tests are also available at several local clinics and healthcare locations. Times and locations can be found using this handy easy to use CDC locator.
You can also locate a nearby testing site by calling 1-800-CDC-INFO or by texting your zip code to “KNOW IT” (566948).
Knowing your HIV status is empowering. When you know your status, you can take care of yourself. Getting that knowledge has never been easier.
Take the test, take control.