World AIDS Day 2020, Ending the HIV/AIDS Epidemic: Resilience and Impact
Learn more about self-testing for HIV.
See if you qualify for Ready, Set, PrEP.
Learn more about the importance of viral supression.
Cross-posted from HUD Exchange
June 26, 2020
National HIV Testing Day (NHTD) is Saturday, June 27th. Reflecting on past NHTDs where in-person testing events brought us together, this occasion is yet another reminder of how our daily lives have changed in a few short months. There are so many challenges confronting our nation right now. As part of a community working to end the HIV epidemic, we are unfortunately already well acquainted with working to overcome challenging issues related health and racial disparities. We already know how hard it is to have positive health outcomes without stable housing, and as we heed the call to shelter-in-place to prevent further spread of COVID-19, safe stable housing becomes even more important. We know that Black/African American communities are disproportionately impacted by HIV and accounted for 57% of HOPWA beneficiaries last year. As our nation strives for racial justice, it is clearer than ever that equal access to housing and healthcare are vital.
This year’s NHTD theme is “Knowing” – knowing your testing options, knowing your risk, knowing your prevention options (including Ready, Set, PrEP), knowing about treatment options, knowing housing is healthcare, and knowing that together we can end the HIV epidemic.
In 2018, 37,968 people received an HIV diagnosis in the United States. Currently 1.2 million people in the U.S. are living with HIV. These numbers do not include the approximately 1 in 7 people living with HIV who do not know their status. It is important, even in the midst of a global pandemic, to get as many people tested for HIV as possible with the goal of Ending the HIV Epidemic.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends HIV Tests for the following populations:
Due to COVID-19, it may be difficult to access HIV testing in the usual ways: in a sexually transmitted disease (STD) clinic, from a primary care practitioner, from pharmacists, or at a community-based organization. It is important that we continue to explore ways to provide HIV diagnostic, prevention, and care services. HIV self-testing is a method that can provide HIV diagnostic services. This includes rapid self-tests and mail-in self-tests as described below.
No matter the method of HIV testing, linkage to care is essential. To find HIV and other services, use the HIV.gov service locator.
The Office of HIV/AIDS Housing encourages you to find ways to participate in this year’s NHTD events while continuing to stay safe and healthy during these challenging times. If you are on social media, join us in using the hashtag #HIVTestingDay and communicating that knowing about HIV and HIV testing can help end the HIV epidemic.
Director, Office of HIV/AIDS Housing