Family Planning Offers Free Rapid HIV Testing Through June 30
Are you positive you’re negative? The only way to know for sure whether you have HIV is to get tested.
And, in observance of National HIV Testing Day on June 27, Family Planning of South Central New York will offer free confidential rapid HIV testing and counseling for the entire week — from June 26 through June 30 — at all five of our local health centers.
Those center locations include:
- Binghamton: 117 Hawley Street
- Oneonta: 37 Dietz Street
- Norwich: 5 Cortland Street
- Sidney: 37 Pleasant Street (Tuesday only)
- Walton: 130 North Street (Wednesday only)
The rapid HIV test is a painless finger prick for a drop of blood. Results are ready in 20 minutes. Patients will also receive counseling on how to identify and reduce their risk of HIV infection.
A person at risk for HIV is someone who may have been exposed to the disease through unprotected sex, sharing needles or a blood transfusion before 1985.
Many people with HIV don’t have any symptoms. In the United States, 1 in 8 people living with HIV don’t know they have it.
“Even if you don’t feel sick — get tested,” Debra Marcus, Family Planning’s chief executive officer, said. “Early treatment is so important. It can help you live a longer, healthier life.”
Marcus added that treatment can also make it less likely that you will pass HIV on to other people.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, young people aged 13-
24 accounted for 22 percent of all new HIV diagnoses in the United States in 2014. This translates to nearly 1 in 5 new diagnoses being reported among youth.
“We are encouraging people of all ages to take advantage of our free testing week,” Marcus said. “Get tested. And know your status.”
Family Planning of South Central New York provides high quality, affordable family planning, related health care and education in Binghamton, Oneonta, Norwich, Sidney and Walton. All medical care is overseen by a Board Certified Gynecologist. Medical services may be free or on a sliding fee scale. Insurance and Medicaid are welcome. For more information, visit fpscny.org or call 607-723-8306.