Get Tested

One way to get involved is to get tested.  Getting tested is one of those "moments of truth", to consider your past, as well as your own knowledge about HIV and the current barriers to getting tested.  It is also a way to Lead by Example.  Unfortunately, because of decreasing funding for testing, options are limited. Consider:

  • Public Health Clinics offer free tests, but can be intrusive in screening as they discern risk factors.  60% of tests have to be used to test "high-risk" groups.  The result is people not deemed "high-risk" are being turned away from testing.  This turns away potential allies and advocates.
  • If you go to your private physician, you may find that you need to educate him/her about the fact that the CDC has been encouraging MDs to offer HIV-tests to all patients since 2006.  Plus, the cost - either through insurance or out-of-pocket - is much higher.

Regardless of how you do it, you may see that there is often a financial or very real social cost. Consider what the availability of a self-administered HIV-test could do for people for whom these barriers are tough to overcome, let alone the flexibilty of people living with HIV to be more involved in community-wide testing.  We invite you to share your experiences as we seek ways to speak to improving the system and expanding options. 

Here is more about current testing options.  For a more detailed look at risk and testing access, click here.  The Centers for Disease Control also has a cost comparison of FDA approved tests