Health Pros want everyone HIV tested - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Health Pros want everyone HIV tested

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September 27, 2006

Cuthbert --  The next time you visit the doctor, you may be encouraged to get tested for HIV - regardless of whether you think you're at risk.  

The Centers for Disease Control wants health care providers to routinely offer the test for people 13 to 64 years old. The CDC says 250,000 Americans have the virus and don't even know it, putting them at risk for AIDS.

Some health workers in South Georgia say the routine testing could help people learn more about the virus.

"The thing you have to remember, it's only contracted through blood, bodily fluids, sexual contact," said Donna Yelverton of the Randolph Health Department. "You don't get it from hugging someone, shaking hands with someone, its not communicable that way."  

About 40% of people infected with HIV are diagnosed within a year of progressing to AIDS.

At that point it may be too late for them to benefit from treatment. At the county health department, a test is $19.00, but health leaders will still accommodate people who can't afford it.

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