Locals encouraged to take advantage of free HIV testing

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wwltv.com

Posted on June 27, 2013 at 9:21 AM

Updated Thursday, Jun 27 at 10:39 AM

WWLTV.com
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NEW ORLEANS - Louisiana ranks in the top ten in the United States for HIV cases among adults and young people aged 13 to 24.

Over 1 million people in the United States have HIV, and one in five don't know.

New Orleans and Baton Rouge are in the top three cities with HIV infections, and 86 percent of cases in Louisiana are among young black people.

"We know that young African Americans and men who have sex with men are at higher risk," said Lila Arnaud, the health educator at Planned Parenthood in the Marigny.

On Thursday, locals can get tested at several sites for free.

The test is a simple mouth swab and results are returned in 20 minutes.

"The point is, you know, to get people tested. It needs to be a routine part of healthcare, and one of the biggest, most powerful things is knowing your status, whether your negative or positive. So we really want people to come out and get tested," said TJ Rogers, the manager of the NO/AIDS Task Force.

For more information, visit http://aids.gov/news-and-events/awareness-days/hiv-testing-day/ and http://www.noaidstaskforce.com/national-hiv-testing-day.

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