Bexley pilots HIV testing after condition increases by 89 per cent over five years (From News Shopper)
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Bexley pilots HIV testing after condition increases by 89 per cent over five years
BEXLEY will be piloting HIV testing after the number of people living with the condition in the borough has increased by 89 per cent in the past five years.
Routine testing will be available to new patients aged 15 to 59, at risk groups, patients with possible HIV related symptoms and individuals requesting a test.
The six-month project has invited GP practices in Belvedere, Erith, North End, Slade Green and Thamesmead East to take part.
The project’s goals include raising awareness of HIV, improving early detection rates and providing fast accurate testing in the community.
Chair of Bexley Clinical Commissioning Group, Dr Howard Stoate, said: "The incidence of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) continues to rise across London and it’s important that we have fast effective ways of detecting these conditions.
"The incident rate in Bexley is two per 1,000 which is relatively small but it pays not to be complacent.
"Of course, using condoms consistently will protect you from STI's, including HIV."
He added: "HIV is not the death sentence it used to be and people with the condition can go on to live a long life with the appropriate medication.
"The most important thing is that you know your HIV status by having an HIV test."