MCHD to offer free HIV testing next week

June 22, 2022

MCHD to offer free HIV testing next week

MOBILE, Alabama — The only way to know your HIV status is to get tested. Knowing your status gives you powerful information to keep you and your partner healthy.

On June 27 each year, the Mobile County Health Department (MCHD) observes National HIV Testing Day (NHTD), a day to emphasize and encourage HIV testing. This year, we observe NHTD as COVID-19 and HIV epidemics continue to affect our communities, the nation, public health departments, and healthcare facilities. As we approach NHTD, we want to recognize partners for their vital services that make HIV testing simple, accessible, affordable, and routine.

MCHD’s Bureau of Disease Surveillance and Control will provide free testing on Monday, June 27, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The services will be offered at the Festival Centre shopping center (Suite 101-A; corner of Airport Boulevard and Montlimar Drive), from the Public Health Response Unit located at the Semmes Health Center (3810 Wulff Road East), and at the Southwest Mobile Health Center (5580 Inn Road in Tillman’s Corner).

The NHTD theme for 2022 is “HIV Testing is Self-care.” The World Health Organization defines self-care as “the ability of individuals, families, and communities to promote health, prevent disease, maintain health, and to cope with illness and disability with or without the support of a healthcare provider.”

The topic of self-care has been particularly prominent during the COVID-19 pandemic as the need for individual and community actions to protect and promote physical and mental health have been so critical. HIV testing is an act of self-care, and knowledge of status is the gateway to engaging in prevention or treatment services that enable individuals, regardless of their status, to live a long and healthy life.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 get tested for HIV at least once as part of routine health care, and more often if you do things that might increase your risk for getting HIV.

Even if you are in a monogamous relationship (both you and your partner are having sex only with each other), you should find out for sure whether you or your partner has HIV.