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HIV Testing Day Set for Saturday in U.S.

Assessment helps people protect themselves and their partners, organizers say

FRIDAY, June 26 (HealthDay News) -- Raising awareness of the importance of HIV testing is among the goals of the U.S. National HIV Testing Day on June 27.

To mark the day, thousands of HIV testing sites, health departments and community-based HIV/AIDS service providers will hold fairs, provide community and media outreach, host special testing-related events or offer extended operating hours. Some of the events may also occur in the days and weeks around National HIV Testing Day.

Organizers also plan to reach out to communities at increased risk of HIV infection, including black and Hispanic populations, both of which are disproportionately affected by HIV/AIDS in the United States.

The campaign also promotes using the Web site to locate HIV testing sites in specific areas.

More than 1 million Americans are living with HIV, and an estimated 250,000 of them don't know they're infected, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Finding out HIV status means that people who test positive can take steps to protect their own health and their partners' health. People who test negative receive information to help them prevent becoming infected with HIV.

More information

Here's where you can find out more about National HIV Testing Day.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, news release, June 2009

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