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Free HIV Testing Available In Kentucky

Several agencies across Kentucky are again offering free HIV testing at various sites over the next week to coincide with National HIV Testing Day on June 27. Kentucky HIV prevention coordinator Dennis Wheatley says despite the development of a simple test and public outreach efforts, many people with HIV don’t know they’re infected. "If you took everyone who was HIV positive and kind of lumped them together, 25-percent of that population wouldn’t actually know their status because they’re not being tested," he said. Since 2006, the Centers for Disease Control has recommended routine HIV for everyone, regardless of risk factors. Wheatley says HIV screening involves a simple mouth swab, although a follow-up blood test may be needed to confirm a positive result.Here's the list of testing sites and dates: · June 23, 9 a.m.-noon, Salvation Army, Christian County· June 25, noon-6 p.m., Lexington Pride Festival, 120-150 N. Limestone St., Fayette County· June 25, 4-8 p.m., Knowing HIV/AIDS, Brook St., Jefferson County · June 27, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., Little Canaan Baptist Church, Henderson County· June 27, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Housing Authority, Warren County· June 27, noon-3 p.m., Central Presbyterian Church, 318 W. KY St., Jefferson County· June 27, 6 p.m., HIV/AIDS Spades Tournament, 2350 Woodhill Dr., Fayette County· June 27, 10 p.m.-1 a.m., Connection Complex, 130 S. Floyd St., Jefferson County For more information on National HIV Testing Day events or other programs and services, please contact Dennis Wheatley in the HIV/AIDS Branch at (502) 564-6539 ext. 3559 or dennis.wheatley@ky.gov.

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation." Email Rick at rhowlett@lpm.org.