Lilian Greenwood MP for Nottingham South took a public HIV test today in an effort to encourage more local people to test for the virus during National HIV Testing Week. Lilian Greenwood has a simple finger-prick blood test.
The negative result of Lilian Greenwood was delivered just 15 minutes after their test.
New figures released by Public Health England in October 2017 revealed that a decline in new HIV infections but late diagnoses remain high.
Organised by Terrence Higgins Trust and African Institute for Social Development, Lilian Greenwood MP met with volunteers and staff to discuss the importance of normalising testing and busting stigma.
National HIV Testing Week, which runs from 18th to 25th November, is run by Terrence Higgins Trust on behalf of HIV Prevention England. The week encourages people to take a painless, simple and quick HIV test, particularly those from the groups most at-risk of HIV, including men who have sex with men and black African communities.
The Terrence Higgins Trust offers rapid HIV testing five days a week by appointment and also at some weekends. This service is for anyone living in Nottingham or Nottinghamshire.
Lilian said “I was delighted to visit Terrence Higgins Trust in Nottingham and raise awareness of the importance of testing for HIV.
“As I found out today by taking a test -; testing is free, fast and simple, and it’s one of the best weapons we have to stop the spread of HIV.”
Sandra Spence, Nottingham Service Manager at Terrence Higgins Trust, said: “Early testing and diagnosis are key to combating this epidemic and we need to remove the stigma around HIV testing. There are now a range of testing options available, from postal tests, to GUM clinics, community sites and home testing.”
Amdani Juma, African Institute for Social Development said:” ‘We’re delighted that Lilian Greenwood MP has taken the time to take a HIV test today and show just how quick and easy it is to be sure of your status.
“Today, if you test positive, effective treatment means you can live as long as anyone else, and medication reduced the amount of virus in your blood to such low levels that, you cannot pass on HIV.”
Find out more about National HIV Testing Week at www.startswithme.org.uk
For more information contact the press team at Terrence Higgins Trust: firstname.lastname@example.org, 07957 812 691
About National HIV Testing Week
- Now in its sixth year, National HIV Testing Week (NHTW) promotes HIV testing to gay or bisexual men and black African men and women. These groups make up seven out of ten people in the UK living with HIV.
- The hashtags for this year’s event are #HIVTestWeek #ImTesting
- The week is co-ordinated by Terrence Higgins Trust as the lead of HIV Prevention England (HPE) funded by Public Health England, with support and participation from organisations in the public, statutory and private sectors, and promotes the benefits of regular testing and treatment for both the individual and community.
Public Health England’s key findings:
- 5164 people were diagnosed with HIV in the UK in 2016.
- This is the biggest ever decline in new diagnoses and is a decline of 17.9% between 2015 and 2016.
- 42% of people are still diagnosed late with HIV (a slight rise from 2016).