Testing Article in the Herts Advertiser

Dear all,

Another article in the Herts Advertiser about HIV testing and diagnosis rates, see here for more http://www.hertsad.co.uk/news/st_albans_charity_urges_more_people_to_test_for_hiv_1_3988780

Also in the Watford Observer letters page last week talking about the chronic late diagnosis rates that affect west Herts…

Despite asking Herts County Council for funding for testing services for at least the last three years, they have refused to act… We introduced a postal testing service last year that the county council are still thinking about, and that the National Aids Trust recommend… Public Health Minister Jane Ellison announced that the Government is about to introduce a nationwide HIV home sampling service, just like the one we have in place already…

Public Health Minister Jane Ellison said in a news article this week: “We have protected the entire £2.45 million national HIV prevention budget, and have announced the first national home sampling service which will triple the number of sampling kits available.

Article about HIV funding is here

http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2015/03/13/hiv-charities-deeply-concerned-over-allocation-of-hiv-prevention-budget/

So it seems that although we may be a bit low on funds at times it hasn’t stopped us introducing such initiatives, imagine what we could achieve if our funding was reinstated….

Strangely, despite the prevalence rates in west Herts being the highest, and the late diagnosis rates also being the same, way above national average, the County Council’s preferred HIV testing service have introduced a 2 hour testing service on a Saturday.. on the opposite side of the County, in Ware, where both rates are much lower… Whilst we welcome any attempts to encourage people to test regularly for HIV surely this would be better held in high prevalence areas, where late diagnosis rates are some 25% above the national average? just a thought…

Thanks for your support as ever

The Crescent Team

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