Feedback: HIV testing facts provided

Thank you for your article about the county HIV counseling and testing program. I am writing to clarify and to add information:

People who are at risk for HIV should know their HIV status. Those at risk include anyone who has had unprotected contact, either through sexual activity or needle use, to another person who is at risk of being HIV positive.

Testing at the Island County Health Department is available for people who are at moderate to high risk at four locations: North and Central Whidbey, South Whidbey and Camano Island. For appointments on North and Central Whidbey, call 679-7351.

Testing is also available at the North and South Whidbey Community Clinics, the South Whidbey Teen Clinic, Planned Parenthood of Oak Harbor and through private providers.

The fee for a test at the Health Department is determined by level of risk and financial need.

Since there is still neither a cure for, nor a vaccine to protect against HIV, prevention is the course to take. HIV counseling and testing is an important step in the prevention process, and can encourage people to make good choices regarding activities that could put them at risk for HIV. Please feel free to call me with questions, or to set up an appointment, at the numbers listed above.

Lea Kouba

HIV/AIDS Project Coordinator