HIV testing week was set up to raise awareness of HIV and to increase testing for HIV.
HIV is a blood borne virus, it is a treatable infection. If you have HIV, the sooner you know, the better as early care/treatment means that HIV won’t damage your health or shorten your life. This can also help to reduce the risk of passing HIV to others. HIV treatment is free in the UK.
Although statistics show that HIV rates are falling in the UK, they also show that many people are diagnosed late when they may be ill as a result of the infection. Statistics also show us that many of the population in the UK don’t know they have the virus – the only way to know for sure is to be tested. Anyone can have a test- it is easily tested for with a simple free, fast blood test. Your results can be available usually within a week. Our notes are separate from hospital records.
In support of HIV testing week- staff, patients and relatives can come along to Sexual Health for free, fast and confidential testing, or order a test online at our website – www.sunderlandsexualhealth.nhs.uk
Condoms are the best barrier against HIV – you can get these also free from our Sexual Health services/ online at our website. Pre-exposure Profylaxis (PrEP) is also another option to help protect against HIV which our service can also provide under guidelines.