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National HIV testing week

Testing for HIV is now quicker and easier than ever, and there is no better time to get tested and know your status.

A new campaign, which starts today (Monday, 7 February) promotes HIV testing for those who could be affected by the virus.

HIV testing is really important because some people who have HIV are not aware, and testing at an earlier stage can mean people being able to receive support and treatment to help them live healthier lives.

Councillor Aysha Raza, Ealing Council’s cabinet member for tackling inequality, said: “A lot of progress has been made in the fight against HIV, with new diagnoses declining. There is still a lot of work to be done, though.

“There are approximately 106,000 people living in the UK with HIV, with more than 6,000 of those not being diagnosed. So, I would recommend to go out and get tested or come along to one of the events listed to have any of your questions answered.”

Councillor Josh Blacker, the council’s cabinet member for healthy lives, said: “This is a great opportunity to promote the varied services that the council and partner organisations offer against tackling HIV. Including Ealing’s new integrated sexual health service on Mattock Lane, which means that PrEP can be prescribed to anyone who is eligible.

“We are aiming to end new transmissions to HIV by 2030. I encourage all residents to use the services on offer.”

Advice and testing and the opportunity to have questions answered, are being offered the following venues:

  • Ealing LIDO, W13 9LA. Wednesday, 9 February, 6-9pm
  • Ealing Rise West Ealing Centre, W13 9BP. Thursday, 17 February, 5-7pm
  • Women’s Wellness Zone, W5 2ST. Thursday, 17 February, 3.30-4.30pm
  • Acton Homeless Concern, W3 8AA. Friday, 11 February, 12noon-2pm
  • West5 Bar, W5 4NT. Saturday, 12 February, 10.30pm-1am
  • University of West London Refreshers Fair. Monday, 14 February. 10am-5pm.

The events are delivered by Spectra who are part of the local integrated sexual health system overseen by London Northwest Healthcare NHS Trust.

Order your postal test kit.

Living with HIV: A survivor’s story

In 2019, we spoke to a local woman who had been living with HIV for a long time and overcome these huge emotional challenges (as well as fighting for her life in the early days) to become an advisor herself. Read Alessandra’s moving story.

Accessing services

Residents can routinely access HIV testing in the borough and by accessing:

Support,  practical help, counselling and peer support for people living with HIV is also available  through Living Well and specialised HIV clinics.

For more information on HIV prevention and local HIV outreach partners, visit the Spectra and THT websites.

You can also access HIV testing and sexual health advice and testing through the online London Sexual Health e-service www.shl.uk and at Sexual Health clinics. For information on local services provided by London Northwest Healthcare Trust in Ealing and surrounding areas Sexual health and contraception services in north west London | Sexual Health (lnwh.nhs.uk)

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