ORLANDO, Fla. – Encouraging people to get tested and know their HIV status can help them stay healthy, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
National HIV Testing Day was first observed 27 years ago on Jun 27, 1995, and getting tested is an act of self-care.
HIV is a virus that attacks the body’s immune system and can lead to the disease AIDS if left untreated, according to the CDC.
The virus is spread by contact with certain bodily fluids of a person with HIV. This is most common during unprotected sex or sharing injection drug equipment, according to HIV.gov.
HIV is an epidemic in the United States, and about 1.2 million people in the country had HIV by the end of 2019, according to the CDC. There were 113,621 people in Florida with diagnosed HIV that year.
Here are five places in Orlando that offer free HIV testing:
The Center Orlando
The Center Orlando is a nonprofit organization that promotes and empowers the LGBTQ+ community and its allies. The organization offers free HIV testing at the Health & Human Services Building on 1200 Hillcrest St., Suite 102. No appointment is needed, and you must be 13 years or older.
Hope and Help
This nonprofit health organization and medical center has a mission to end the HIV epidemic in Florida through health education, prevention, testing and treatment. Free HIV testing is available to everyone, and the center also offers testing for Hepatitis C and syphilis. The organization’s east Orlando location is on 4122 Metric Dr.
Miracle of Love
Free confidential HIV testing is offered at this nonprofit’s Stafford House on 711 Seminole Ave. without an appointment needed. Tests are offered Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
University of Central Florida
The university’s Wellness and Health Promotion Services offers free HIV testing to anyone in the Orlando community. UCF offers the testing Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. with an appointment needed.
CAN Community Health
This private nonprofit organization owns and operates 34 medical clinics, and it offers free rapid and home HIV tests. The clinic on 1301 W. Colonial Dr. is open Monday through Friday.