World AIDS day – How to get tested
Want to get yourself tested? Don’t know how? Don’t worry. Help is just around the corner!
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One in every three hundred Indians is HIV positive! Could you be one of them?
Dr. Glory Alexander, Director of ASHA foundation tells mDhil how and where you can get yourself tested.
Where can one get tested for HIV/AIDS?
HIV testing is now available in all hospitals in ICTC’s – Integrated counselling and testing centres. HIV testing should always be accompanied with counselling. We recommend both pre test counselling and post test counselling. The pre test counselling is to assess the risk of the person who has come for testing and to find out the gaps in the person’s HIV knowledge and to describe to the person how the tests are done.
If the first test is positive, there are two more tests which are done to confirm it. To confirm that a person is HIV positive, three tests need to be done and all three need to be positive.
When should a person get HIV test done?
There are several situations in which one should get HIV tests done.
• If one has had unprotected sexual contact with an unknown partner.
• If one has sexual contact with multiple partners.
• If one partner is HIV positive.
• If a person is pregnant, HIV test is advised, since there is a likelihood that if the mother is HIV positive, she could transmit that to the child.
• If a person has chronic fever for more than one month’s duration.
• If one has had a blood transfusion in the past and they are not sure that this blood has been tested for HIV
How soon, after a sexual contact, should a person get tested for HIV?
If a person has had sexual contact 2 weeks ago, then it would take a minimum of 8 weeks for the antibodies to be produced. Testing for HIV means testing for the antibody, not for the virus.
For more information, contact the Asha Foundation at ashaf.org or 080-23543333/2222
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