HIV status? Testing is the only way to know.
Dec 1 2015
Today, we recognize World AIDS Day which unites people in the fight against HIV/AIDS. The facts are:
- 36.9 million people are living with HIV
- 2.6 million children are infected with HIV
- 2 million new HIV infections in 2014
The battle against HIV takes place on many fronts including advancements in and development of new antiretroviral drugs, education outreach programs to change behaviors, accessible needle exchange programs, and proactive prenatal care and treatment. All of these initiatives are supported by a critical tool – an HIV test.
Amongst the sobering facts on HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths, there are some success stories. Cuba is one example where testing and awareness have helped eliminate the mother-to-child transmission of HIV, as well as syphilis, in that country. The United Nations reported earlier this week that data indicates that mother-to-child transmission may also be eradicated in 17 countries in the Americas, including the United States and Canada. The Millennium Development Goal of reversing the HIV epidemic was reached ahead of the 2015 deadline and this past September the United Nations set a new goal calling for the end of the AIDS epidemic by 2030.
The efforts, both large scale and community-based, to combat and eventually eliminate HIV, are working. It is estimated that in the past 15 years the global response to HIV has averted 30 million new HIV infections. Critical in this success is testing which interrupts the cycle of infection by reaching people unaware of their status. Awareness of HIV status enables action including changing certain behaviors to stop the spread of HIV, starting treatment early, or taking precautions for women in labor.
Testing is the only way to know your HIV status. It is the first step, and possibly the hardest for individuals to take. There are a myriad of reasons contributing to why a person does not get an HIV test including accessibility, inconvenience, fear, ignorance, stigma and discrimination. Organizations and healthcare providers focused on ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic, are aiming to eliminate these reasons and normalize testing. Rapid HIV testing solutions are playing a big role in making testing widely available as part of routine healthcare and to those who need it most in developing countries and high risk populations.
MedMira rapid HIV tests are efficient, high quality, user-friendly tools that are just as applicable in resource-limited settings as they are in the most advanced healthcare laboratories in the world. Using our unique RVF Technology, MedMira rapid tests deliver instant results and can be conducted with the patient present, reducing both the anxiety of waiting for results and the number of people who never return for their results. The simplicity and speed of MedMira rapid tests also enable minimal training for counsellors conducting the tests and a high throughput at testing sites which increases the number of people being tested and knowing their status.
On this World AIDS Day we recognize the progress that has been made in the battle against HIV/AIDS and the efforts of all those making it happen. There is still much to be done. We remain dedicated to advancing our technology and providing testing solutions that contribute to the global efforts against HIV/AIDS and helping people know…