Today is National HIV Testing Day
HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) is the virus that causes AIDS. Today, in honor of National HIV Testing Day, National Episcopal AIDS Coalition (NEAC) and National Episcopal Health Ministries encourage you to get tested for HIV.
The only way to know if you have HIV is to get tested. Many people with HIV don’t have any symptoms. In the United States, 1 in 5 people living with HIV don't know they have it.
Even if you don’t feel sick, getting early treatment for HIV is important: early treatment can help you live a longer, healthier life.
Am I at risk for HIV?
HIV is spread through some of the body’s fluids, like blood, semen (cum), vaginal fluids, and breast milk. HIV is passed from one person to another by:
Having unprotected sex (vaginal, anal, or oral) with a person who has HIV
Sharing needles with someone who has HIV
Breastfeeding, pregnancy, or childbirth if the mother has HIV
Getting a blood transfusion that has HIV (very rare in the U.S.)
HIV testing is covered for many people under the Affordable Care Act, the health care reform law passed in 2010. Depending on your insurance plan, you may be able to get tested at no cost to you. Talk to your insurance provider.
For more information (including local events), visit the CDC website for National HIV Testing Day.