Why should I get tested for HIV?
People at higher risk should get tested more often. People who answer yes to any of the following questions should get an HIV test as soon as possible:
- Are you a man who has had sex with another man?
- Have you had sex—anal or vaginal—with a partner who has HIV?
- Have you had more than one sex partner since your last HIV test?
- Have you injected drugs and shared needles, syringes, or other drug-injection equipment (for example, cookers) with others?
- Have you exchanged sex for drugs or money?
- Have you been diagnosed with or treated for another STD?
- Have you been diagnosed with or treated for hepatitis or tuberculosis (TB)?
- Have you had sex with someone who could answer yes to any of the above questions or someone whose sexual history you don’t know?
You should be tested at least once a year if you keep doing any of these things. People at higher risk should get tested more often. Sexually active gay and bisexual men may benefit from more frequent testing (for example, every 3 to 6 months).
I’m pregnant. Why should I get tested?
All pregnant women should get tested for HIV so that they can begin treatment if they have HIV. Getting tested for HIV will help you to protect your child from getting HIV. If a woman is treated for HIV early in her pregnancy, the risk of transmitting HIV to her baby is extremely low (1% or less).
How does taking an HIV test help me?
Knowing your HIV status will help you start treatment and keep you healthy. Taking HIV medicine can help you keep your viral load very low. Getting to and maintaining a low viral load is the best way to fight HIV. Undetectable viral loads will keep you healthy and protect your sex partner from getting HIV. If you test negative, you can start using HIV prevention tools that will help you stay HIV-free.
Who will pay for my HIV test?
HIV screening is covered by health insurance without a co-pay, as required by the Affordable Care Act. If you do not have medical insurance, some testing sites may offer free tests.
Your healthcare provider will not charge you any co-pays if you have insurance. There are also free HIV testing sites. To find a testing site near you Place click here. We can also ship you a free test to your home by click here