HIV Testing Wednesdays
aka Hump Day Wednesdays (on Specific Wednesdays)
Free HIV Testing, condoms, and birth control education will be offered inside SHAC Health Promotion on the Plaza Level from 10:00 AM-2:00 PM on specific Wednesdays. HIV Testing is brought to you by UNM Truman Health Services.
HIV Testing Wednesdays will resume in Fall 2023. Check back here for updates.
See also: SHAC Event Calendar
Frequently Asked Questions
What is HIV?
HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. It is the virus that can lead to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome or AIDS if not treated. Unlike some other viruses, the human body can’t get rid of HIV completely, even with treatment. So once you get HIV, you have it for life.No effective cure currently exists, but with proper medical care, HIV can be controlled. The medicine used to treat HIV is called antiretroviral therapy or ART. If taken the right way, every day, this medicine can dramatically prolong the lives of many people infected with HIV, keep them healthy, and greatly lower their chance of infecting others. Before the introduction of ART in the mid-1990s, people with HIV could progress to AIDS in just a few years. Today, someone diagnosed with HIV and treated before the disease is far advanced can live nearly as long as someone who does not have HIV (Centers for Disease Control, 2017).
Should I get tested for HIV?
Everyone ages 13-64 should get tested for HIV at least once. The focus is typically on those most at risk for HIV infection.
In New Mexico, those populations are:
- Men who have sex with men (MSM)
- Injection Drug Users (IDUs)
- Heterosexuals at risk (HAR)
Some sexually active gay and bisexual men may benefit from more frequent testing (every 3 to 6 months).
If you’re pregnant or planning to get pregnant, get tested as early as possible to protect your baby.
You should get tested at least once a year if:
- You’ve had sex with an HIV positive partner.
- You’ve had more than one partner since your last HIV test.
- You’ve shared needles or works to inject drugs.
- You’ve had another STD, hepatitis or tuberculosis.
- You’ve had sex with anyone who has done anything listed above or with someone whose sexual history you don’t know.
Is the test anonymous?
The test is not anonymous, but it is confidential.
What are we testing for?
The presence of HIV antibodies in the blood.
How do I get tested?
- Drop by the SHAC Health Promotion Office (SHAC Plaza Level) on Hump Day Wednesdays from 11:00 AM-2:00 PM (every other Wednesday). Click here for a list of dates for Fall 2022.
- An educator from UNM Truman Health Services will obtain a verbal consent, explain the procedure, and obtain a blood sample via finger stick.
How do I obtain my results?
Results will be available 15 minutes after the finger stick and completion of educational counseling with the educator.
If the test result is Negative: The educator will discuss a follow-up plan with a SHAC health provider, preventive actions, and retesting window.
If the test result is Positive: The educator will discuss a follow-up plan and initiate medical care with UNM Truman Health Services. The rapid HIV test is 99.9% accurate and a confirmatory blood test is indicated.