By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley)– Tuesday June 27, is National HIV Testing Day. The San Bernardino County Department of Public Health will offer free rapid HIV testing, resources, educational information and incentives at two locations. Testing services will be offered from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the San Bernardino Health Center 606 E. Mill Street in San Bernardino, and the Ontario Health Center 150 E. Holt Boulevard, 2nd floor, in Ontario from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. The rapid HIV test involves a simple oral swab that produce test results in 20 minutes.
Getting tested is the only way to know your HIV status. HIV is manageable through early intervention and medical care. Knowing your HIV status and using proper prevention can greatly reduce the chances of transmitting HIV to partners or an unborn child.
San Bernardino County is home to 3,863 persons living with HIV/AIDS. Key to the efforts to reduce HIV is preventing new cases through promotion and awareness efforts and linking HIV-positive persons to medical treatment.
“Early HIV diagnosis is critical and, people who are infected can fully benefit from available life-saving treatments,” said Dr. Maxwell Ohikhuare, Health Officer for San Bernardino County. “Finding out whether you are infected with HIV is the first step to improving your health, and the health of your community.”
The Department of Public Health HIV Prevention Program offers free rapid HIV and Hepatitis C testing and risk-counseling services. Routine, annual testing is encouraged. For people engaging in high-risk behaviors such as unprotected sex or sharing needles, testing every three to six months is recommended.
For more information on National HIV Testing Day, and/or rapid HIV/Hepatitis C testing and counseling services, please call the HIV Prevention Program at 1 (800) 255-6560.