Jun 26 2017

St. Louis Area Public Health Departments Urge All Sexually Active People to be Tested for HIV


Tuesday, June 27th is National HIV Testing Day and the Saint Louis County Department of Public Health and City of St. Louis Department of Health are using this opportunity to remind everyone who is sexually-active to be tested regularly for HIV.

“HIV has been a public health threat for almost a quarter century,” said Melba Moore, acting director of the City of St. Louis Department of Health, “yet some still have not gotten the message that HIV testing is one of the major keys to stopping the spread of the virus.”

HIV is the Human Immunodeficiency Virus. Whenever someone is infected by HIV yet fails to receive treatment, that person can develop Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, also called AIDS. In the U.S., more than a million Americans are living with HIV.

“When the HIV epidemic first started, it was considered a death sentence,” said Dr. Khan, “but with today’s anti-viral drugs, it can be treated much more like a chronic disease. However, people first need to know they have it before treatment can begin. The sooner treatment is started, the better the prognosis. Again, the key is testing.”

Testing also serves an important role in preventing the spread of the virus. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has found that more than 90 percent of new HIV infections in the United States could be prevented by testing and diagnosing people who have HIV and ensuring they receive prompt, ongoing care and treatment.

The CDC recommends that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 be tested at least once as part of their routine health care. People with certain risk factors should be tested more frequently.

The Saint Louis County Department of Public Health offers free HIV testing at its North Central Community Health Center located at 4000 Jennings Station Road in Pine Lawn, MO. Throughout the month of June, Walgreens Company is also offering free HIV testing at select locations as part of National HIV Testing Day. Additionally, two City of St. Louis Department of Health subcontractors will offer extended hours for free HIV testing on June 27th:

1. Project Ark
4169 Laclede Avenue, St. Louis, MO 63108
Hours: 11 AM-8 PM
(314) 535-7275

2. St. Louis Effort for AIDS
1027 South Vandeventer Avenue 7th Floor, St. Louis, MO 63110
Hours: 7 AM-7 PM
(314) 645-6451

For more local St. Louis City and St. Louis County locations that provide free HIV testing, visit:
www.STLCondoms.com
www.GetTestedSTL.org

For information about the Walgreens locations, visit:
www.greaterthan.org/free-hiv-testing-walgreens-2017

For information about other locations that provide testing, visit:
www.gettested.cdc.gov

For more information about National HIV Testing Day, visit:
www.hiv.gov/events/awareness-days/hiv-testing-day