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National HIV Testing Day

June 27th is National HIV Testing Day. Did you know that there are more than 632,300 gay and bisexual men living with HIV in the United States? But gay and bisexual men are not the only ones at risk. It is so important to get checked and know your status- for our health and wellbeing as well as the health and wellbeing of our sexual partner(s). 

Living with HIV is not as it used to be. There are treatments and effective plans in place to help those who are diagnosed to continue to live fulfilling, and healthy lives. Nevertheless, the key is get tested, and if positive, to create a plan with a medical provider as early as possible.

One big hurdle is to end the stigma that surrounds being diagnosed with HIV. A stigma that started during the 80s when HIV and AIDS were known as the “Gay Cancer” a harmful and highly inaccurate term that caused a lot of damage in our LGBTQ+ community. Some people have used that rhetoric to push homophobic and racist agendas and create a narrative that paints folx living with HIV/AIDS as deviants that are worthy of ridicule and disdain. This is not so. Our LGBTQ+ communities are thriving and we becoming healthier then ever before. Our physical health can have a huge impact on our mental health. So, it is important to care for both aspects of our wellbeing. Let’s get tested and take care of ourselves.

If you have any questions or comments, please reach out to our mental health team at Therapy@utahpridecenter.org

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