Voluntary HIV Testing on the Rise
At the launch of the holiday campaign Come back without HIV National AIDS Center reported a twofold rise in HIV testing since 2006. This is good news that shows a remarkable growth of awareness in the Polish society. Nevertheless, it also tells that Poles, especially young people, engage in risky sexual behaviours that urge them to undergo testing.
In 2006, 13,500 individuals checked in anonymously to determine their HIV status. This year’s figure is twice as big. According to National AIDS Centre the increase in testing is linked to awareness-raising campaigns. The media play a huge role here as well. For instance, two months ago, when the media publicized news that even every third sex worker might be HIV positive, testing points became crowded overnight. People who volunteer for testing are mostly young, aged 20 – 25, heterosexual, mainly students and those with freelance professions. There are also more and more women – every a third of all clients. Forty percent of clients report that the main reason for testing is unprotected sexual intercourse.