HIV home testing kits launched in Fife

Safe, accurate and results within 15 minutes
Nathan Sparling  chief executive, HIV ScotlandNathan Sparling  chief executive, HIV Scotland
Nathan Sparling chief executive, HIV Scotland

Testing for HIV can now be carried out at home, Fife Health and Social Care Partnership (HSCP) has announced.

Free kits make it easier, and will lead to more Fifers diagnosed earlier.

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The test is safe, accurate and quick to us - it can give results within 15 minutes.

The health partnership’s Sexual Health & Blood Borne Virus (SH&BBV) services has worked with HIV Scotland, Waverley Care and Terrence Higgins Trust Scotland to develop and offer the new kit.

Heather Bett, executive lead, said: “Early diagnosis of HIV infection enables better treatment options and reduces the risk of transmitting the infection to others.

“The free home testing kits are particularly effective tools during the Coronavirus pandemic. They will help people get tested and treated early if they test positive.”

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Launching the new kits, the agency wanted to raise awareness among GPs and clinicians about the importance of considering an HIV test as part of routine examinations.

Dr Naomi Bulteel, Fife HSCP consultant in infectious diseases said: “The earlier someone is diagnosed the better.

“ Advances in medicines mean that people with HIV on effective treatment can live healthy lives with zero risk of passing on the virus sexually.”

The launch was also welcomed by Nathan Sparling, chief executive, HIV Scotland.

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He said: “Diagnosing HIV is the most important part of our mission to reach zero new HIV transmissions, so it’s important that different testing options exist, especially when the advice remains to stay at home due to the Coronavirus.

“For most people, self-testing is fast, safe, accurate and convenient – and it provides people with another option that can help them get swift access to treatment if needed. It’s important for everyone to know their HIV status so they can protect their health and that of their partners too.”

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