Kits permitting folks to check themselves for HIV at home may be bought over the counter in the Britain for the first time,” BBC News recently reported.
The UK government has amended the law so “do it yourself” home testing kits for HIV are currently legal to be sold over-the-counter.
Can go I out and purchase a test?
No – at least not yet. No corporations have applied for a license to sell self-testing kits inside the eu Union. though this can be comprehensible as self-testing kits were previously illegal.
The charity the National Aids Trust predicts that self-testing kits can become accessible by late 2014 or early 2015.
Why has the law been changed?
The government hopes that the modification in law can encourage additional folks to get tested for HIV. it’s thought that as several jointly in 5 folks with HIV don’t realise they’re infected.
Aside from the danger of spreading the virus to others, folks whose diagnosis of HIV is delayed tend to have a worse outcome. If treatment begins soon once the infection happens then there’s a way higher probability of preventing complications of HIV. With prompt treatment an individual with HIV will expect to have a traditional life expectancy.
How can the tests work?
It is likely that any commercially accessible test are going to be supported available principle because the OraQuick In-Home HIV test, that was approved by the North American country Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
This test works by checking for antibodies for HIV, AN immune response that happens if an individual is infected. The test involves taking a swab of fluid from the higher and lower gums.
The swab is then placed into a provided tube and then after 20-40 minutes either one or 2 lines ought to appear. One line suggests that the test is negative, 2 implies that the test may be positive. in the event of a positive test, follow up testing, from a sexual health clinic or similar is usually recommended.
How reliable area unit the tests?
At the moment there’s solely reliable information accessible on the OraQuick In-Home HIV test.
Data collected by the government agency suggests that the OraQuick test can produce one false positive result out of concerning every 5,000; that’s for every 5,000 folks tested, one are going to be incorrectly diagnosed with HIV.
More worryingly, the government agency estimates that identical test has a false negative rate of one in twelve; that’s for each 12 those that area unit tested, one can incorrectly be given the “all-clear”.
Due to this uncertainty, current recommendation is to consult a health care employee concerning testing.
Can I get a HIV test anyplace else?
There are various places to go for AN HIV blood test, such as:
sexual health clinics, additionally referred to as genitourinary medication (GUM) clinics
clinics run by charities like the Terrence Higgins Trust
some doc surgeries
some family planning and young people’s clinics
local medicine agencies
at AN prenatal clinic, if you’re pregnant
a private clinic, wherever you’ll ought to pay
Home sampling kits are accessible, which permit you to require a spit sample or blood spot and send them off to a laboratory for testing.
These area unit accessible on-line and from some pharmacies, however you’ll typically ought to acquire them.
How has the news been received?
Most of the reaction to the government’s modification in policy has been positive. A advocate for the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, aforementioned “”HIV self-testing kits might facilitate increase designation by providing additional alternative for those that are in danger however area unit reluctant to induce a take a look at nose to nose from existing services.”
Certain sections of the media have raised considerations that home testing could lead on to misdiagnosis in those that lack the right coaching to interpret the results of the tests.
Similar considerations were raised once home gestation kits were introduced and that they area unit currently a ordinarily accepted sort of testing.
What if I test positive for HIV using a self-test kit?
It is vital is that any positive test result’s confirmed by a professional, not least as a result of if you’re HIV positive you’ll would like recommendation on treatment choices.
And if a test established negative that ought to not be taken as licence to require sexual risks or inject extralegal medicine.
The most effective thanks to scale back your risk of HIV is to invariably use a prophylactic device throughout sex ANd ne’er share needles if you’re an injecting substance abuser. browse additional concerning HIV bar.