HIV Testing

by Christa Lollis

Taking two minutes out of your day could give you a longer life. All it takes is a blood sample to find out if you're HIV positive. "A lot of people are fearful about testing. They don't want to know and another thing is they're afraid if they are and people find out they will be you know isolated or ostracized in some kind of way but we just want to make everybody aware of it. It's important that people do know what their status is. If you've never been tested then you don't know," Aundrill Henderson, with Health Horizons explained.

The group at Health Horizons tries to educate area residents. They offer their services year round. The hard part is getting people to realize they need the test. "Their perception of risk may be that they're low or medium risk and most people don't want to think that they are at risk for HIV," Henderson said. Experts say most people are at risk or already infected and don't even know. But knowing is what will save you and your partner. Henderson says, "If they are HIV positive then they will be able to get the treatments they need and they will also be able to not go around spreading it to other people. And, people who are HIV positive can also be re-infected with a different strand of HIV." That's why they want to make sure east Texans know to protect themselves so they don't become the next statistic. "It only takes 1 time with 1 person who's infected," she said.