HBHC provides free HIV testing at Market Days

Sat. August 9, 2014 8:18 AM by Denny Patterson

Hang out with HBHC staff, get healthy at the same time, during Market Days weekend.

Chicago, IL - The 33rd annual Northalsted Market Days is here! And while you are enjoying the largest two-day street festival in the Midwest, why not take an extra minute out of your day to check your HIV status? 

"HBHC will offer fast and reliable HIV testing at Market Days so that patients can know their status, be empowered to make the best choices for their health, and then get back to enjoying the festival," Howard Brown Health Center Director of HIV/STI Services Daniel Pohl told ChicagoPride.com.

Howard Brown Health Center (HBHC) and Broadway Youth Center (BYC) are providing free one minute rapid HIV testing at Aris Health, 3245 N. Halsted Street, as an extension of their regular walk-in and outreach sexual health services and testing, on Saturday, Aug. 9 and Sunday, Aug 10. from 1 to 5 p.m.

"Knowing your HIV status empowers you to make the best choices for your health," said Pohl. "Although it can be treated at any stage, HIV is easiest to treat if caught sooner; and, a person who finds out their status has changed can choose to protect the health of sexual partners. When the test is negative, you can take steps to stay HIV free!"

HBHC and BYC staff will be able to deliver safe and accurate results almost immediately with INSTI, the one minute rapid HIV test. In addition, staff will also be able to further assist with preliminary positive results and provide information about affordable treatment options that HBHC has available. For those with negative results, HBHC will talk about care and mental health services that can improve health and help HIV prevention.

"HIV testing has been and continues to be free at HBHC and BYC," Pohl said. "With these tests, we want to emphasize how easy and fast it is to know your status and stay healthy. Who doesn't have an extra minute for something so important? We also offer a great resource beyond testing by having staff available to further educate and support individuals with positive and negative results."

For anyone who will not be at Market Days and would like to get tested, HBHC has expanded testing and treatment services in the Walk-In Clinic. No appointment necessary.

Aris Health, which opened in September 2013 is an extension of HBHC, delivers a wide range of comprehensive medical and behavioral health services with a specialization in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) health.