New Zealand Aids Foundation (NZAF) is running an HIV testing campaign to encourage Kiwis to get tested for HIV.
The campaign, which runs between October and December, aims to reduce new HIV transmissions among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men.
“Unfortunately, in 2016, there is still stigma and fear around HIV, which prevents people from getting tested. Late testing is an issue in New Zealand and there are Kiwis living with HIV that don’t know it yet. We know that the numbers of new cases are increasing, and that doesn’t take into account the people who are unaware that they are living with HIV”, says Dr. Anne Robertson at MidCentral Sexual Health Services.
NZAF highlights that an HIV positive person, who is taking HIV medication that results in an undetectable viral load, has substantially reduced risk of passing on HIV to sexual partners. Therefore, it is very important that the number of people living with undiagnosed and untreated HIV infection is reduced.
“Once a person has been diagnosed, the right medication can be put into place and the risk of transmitting the infection to others is significantly reduced. We need to encourage Kiwis to leave their fears behind and get tested”, says Dr. Robertson.
Do you know your HIV status? Testing is free and easy, contact MidCentral Sexual Health Service on 0800 808 602 for a FREE and confidential HIV test