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HIV advocate concerned about home testing

3 years ago May 17, 2012 May 17, 2012 Thursday, May 17 2012 Thursday, May 17, 2012 5:23:23 PM CDT in News
Source: WBRZ
By: Olivia LaBorde

BATON ROUGE- Giving yourself an HIV test in your own home could be a reality in the near future.

An advisory panel recommended the FDA approve an over-the-counter version of a test widely used by health professionals.

With the Baton Rouge the area now ranked number 1 in the nation for New AIDS cases per capita, the test could have a big impact.  Most people News 2 talked to seem glad to hear they could soon take the test in the privacy of their homes.

“It’s something that’s a personal health concern that should be dealt with personally,” said Sadie Sinor.

Usually when you take an HIV test in a doctor’s office of a clinic, a healthcare professional will be there to swab your cheek and give you results 20 minutes later.  The at-home test will work the same way, expect you won’t have a health professional with you.

That's what concerns HIV testing advocate AJ Johnson.

“If a person takes a test and their by themselves, you don't know what the mental response to that is going to be towards that,” he said.

The makers of the kit, OraSure Tecnhologies, say they'll have counselors available toll free over the phone 24 hours a day that can refer people to other local resources.

Millicient Foster told News 2 she needed more than that when she got her HIV positive results.

“I was devastated," she said. "If I would've been at home alone I wouldn't have been able to handle it.”

The FDA says it is still reviewing the test.

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