10 reasons to test – European HIV-Hepatitis Testing Week 2015
Today marks the beginning of the third annual European HIV-Hepatitis Testing Week (20-27 November).
Testing week aims to make people more aware of their HIV and Hepatitis status. To mark the beginning of this year’s campaign, we thought we’d share our top 10 reasons to test:
- Peace of mind – whether a test is positive or negative, we can help you with the next steps
- Take control of your health – HIV can be managed well with treatment and Hepatitis C can be cured.
- Early diagnosis can protect your long-term health – with treatment, a person diagnosed early with HIV can expect a near normal life expectancy while someone living with Hepatitis C can be cured with no long-term damage to the liver.
- You may be infected and not know it – in Scotland, an estimated 15,500 people living with Hepatitis C and over 1,000 living with HIV have not been diagnosed.
- It’s quick and easy – tests require a few small drops of blood taken from a finger prick. Some tests are sent away for results within a few days but rapid HIV testing and home testing gives results in just 20 minutes.
- It’s convenient – there are a number of places you can go to get tested (your GP, local sexual health clinic or services like Waverley Care). These options are flexible to suit you and, in all cases, your information will be treated confidentially
- It reduces new infections – if you receive a positive diagnosis, you can take steps to reduce the risks of passing the virus on to others.
- It can help you avoid infection in the future – if your result is negative, the health professional who carries out your test will be able to advise you on how to avoid future infection.
- Testing while pregnant can protect your baby – by following medical advice, there’s a less than one per cent chance that an HIV positive woman’s baby will be born with HIV.
- Testing can put an end to HIV & Hepatitis C – it is only through people testing and being diagnosed that we can support people to avoid passing on the viruses and in the future achieve an HIV and Hepatitis C free society.
To find out more information about our testing services, click here.