Today, June 27, marks the 19th annual National HIV Testing Day with a goal to promote advocacy and testing for the HIV/AIDS virus. Organized by the National Association of People with AIDS, the day was first held in 1995 with a goal to increase testing by at least 10 percent nationwide. Hopefully, that number will be significantly higher in the bBlack community now that the CDC reports that blacks are the racial group most affected by HIV. In 2009, blacks comprised just 14 percent of the U.S. population but accounted for 44 percent of all new HIV infections. Recently, it was found that 40 percent of new infections among blacks are now occurring among those between the ages of 13 and 29 and the virus is now the third leading cause of death among black women ages 35 to 44 years.
Collectively, an estimated 1.1 million Americans are infected with HIV, but as many as 20 percent of them don’t know they carry the virus.
In the metro Atlanta area there are several locations where you can learn your status completely free of charge. Check out five of them below.
11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
1605 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta
9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
3075 Breckinridge Blvd., Suite 415, Duluth, Ga., 30096
AIDS Research Consortium of Atlanta (ARCA)
9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
131 Ponce de Leon Ave. NE, Suite 130
10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
60 11th St. NE, Atlanta
Standing to Achieve New Direction (STAND)
8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Free HIV testing and health screenings
3423 Covington Dr., Suite E, Decatur, Ga., 30032
To learn where to get free testing in your city, visit www.hivtest.org.