World Aids Day takes place on Thursday (1 December) and Ealing Town Hall will be lit-up red to support people living with HIV and remember lives that have been lost.
Councillor Josh Blacker, Ealing Council’s cabinet member for healthy lives, said: “HIV can affect anyone, and World Aids Day is a day when we highlight the stigma and discrimination still surrounding HIV, and commemorate the 35 million people who have died from HIV or AIDS related illnesses.
“There are now many measures available for prevention and treatment. Early diagnosis is key and free, confidential testing is available at clinics in the borough, through the online e-service for self-testing and also at open access NHS sexual health services across London.”
Councillor Aysha Raza added: “Globally there are an estimated 38 million people who are living with HIV and currently over 105,000 people who have it in the UK. World Aids Day tackles stigma and discrimination surrounding HIV, secures the rights of people living with HIV. Testing and support are available all year round, for free, in NHS sexual health clinics, the London online e-service and through outreach partners.”
While London has made significant progress in reducing infection and meeting targets on reducing diagnosis times, the city still had the highest rates of HIV in 2020. That year, 37% of new diagnoses in England were of London residents.
Testing is essential to early diagnosis
Significant scientific advances have been made in HIV treatment and early diagnosis is key to gaining treatment.
The sooner people are tested, the sooner they can receive treatment and support and have better chances of living full and healthy lives
Testing is available all year round, for free, in NHS sexual health clinics, the London online e-service and through Spectra in Ealing.
John Dugdale, from Spectra explains more about their services, “Spectra provides regular testing opportunities within the local communities, in various venues and locations. Enabling people to test regularly for HIV and STI’s, quickly and confidentially by experienced workers. We are able to provide referral pathways into statutory services and signpost to additional health related agencies for the residents of Ealing and nearby. Testing regularly reduces the chance of late diagnosis and is so easy with just a finger prick and 15 minutes of your time.”
To promote World Aids Day, there will be pop-up sites available, where you can have queries answered and have an onsite, free and confidential test:
- Thursday, 1 December: Ealing Central Library, The Broadway, W5 5JY, 12noon-4pm
- Wednesday, 30 November: The Lido Centre, 63 Mattock Lane. W13 9LA, 6-9pm.
Four proven ways to prevent HIV
‘Be Sure. Know The Four’ is a HIV prevention campaign run by Do It London, which highlights the four proven ways to prevent HIV:
- HIV testing
- PrEP (a HIV prevention pill and tests available in sexual health clinics)
- Undetectable (treatment taken by people who are HIV positive, which can prevent onward transmission)
For more information visit the Do It London website
Where to go for testing and diagnosis
For further information on local sexual health services visit: