Letter to the Editor: Marking National HIV Testing Day

Wednesday, June 27th is National HIV Testing Day.  When this annual observance started in 1985, there were fewer resources to treat a positive HIV diagnosis.  We have made great progress in testing, early intervention and treatment of HIV. In fact, approximately half of those with HIV achieved viral suppression through lifesaving medications.  Despite these advances, the CDC estimates that 14% of those who are infected, many of them young people, are living with the virus and do not know it and are unintentionally spreading infection.  Rapid testing with oral swabs is simple and easy.   Testing can reduce those numbers and get everyone who needs it into care, regardless of their ability to pay.

The Health Resources and Services Administration funds programs and providers who play a critical role in finding, testing, and providing primary medical care and treatment for people living with HIV. HRSA’s Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program and the Health Center Program can help you get the care and treatment you need and help you find a local provider.  For more information about HRSA‘s programs, visit www.hrsa.gov.Find a nearby testing site at locator.hiv.gov or contact your local or state health department.

Save your life or someone you love. Know your status!

— Eric Bradford

Bradford is the deputy regional administrator for the Health Resources and Services Administration in Seattle.

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