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Two tests positive for HIV since self-testing introduced, Persons urged to utilise self-testing




Two persons tested positive for HIV since the Ministry of Health through the National Aids Programme Secretariat (NAPS) introduced its self-testing initiative in February.


Programme Manager for NAPS Dr. Tariq Jagnarine said 95% of persons have returned their HIV results after using the self-testing kits in the comfort of their own home.  


The self-testing initiative was rolled out in February and so far, two persons tested positive for HIV.


“It’s a preliminary test; it helps you to know your status but even if it’s positive or negative, you can still return back to the HIV testing site and have a test done that confirms your status. So this is just a preliminary test.”


He is encouraging persons to get themselves tested for HIV using this initiative as “It is better to know your status.”


“Persons don’t have to be afraid, get tested, go on treatment and live healthy lives […] There is treatment; treatment is available, free of cost, very effective, fast working, less side effects, one pill. We have one of the better programmes right now that once if you’re HIV positive, gone are the days when persons use to think that HIV was life threatening.”


The self-testing kit is available at all 50 testing sites across the country and this will allow persons to conduct the tests in the comfort of their own homes.


Counselling will be available before testing and after the results have returned.


Meanwhile, there are currently 9,500 positive cases of HIV in the country, representing a prevalence of 1.3%.


Region Four (4) accounts for the highest number of cases with 5900, followed by Region Three (3)  with 950, 690 cases in Region Six (6) and 549 cases in Region Two (2)

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