Free HIV Home Testing Kits Available - Access Health Louisiana

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Free HIV Home Testing Kits Available

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Get Checked AHL

Get tested from the comfort of your home.

GetCheckedAHL is Access Health Louisiana’s home-based testing program that provides free HIV testing and counseling to residents across southeast Louisiana.  (*At this time, the program is not available to patients living in Central Louisiana.)  Participants will receive a home-based kit and will be scheduled for a real-time virtual testing appointment with a trained healthcare professional.  During this appointment, the testing navigator will walk you through the steps of testing, offer counseling and support, and discuss your results with you.

How to know if you need a test.

Regular HIV testing is an important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle for all adults. If you are between the ages of 18 and 64 and haven’t been tested for HIV in the past year, then you should consider requesting one of our home HIV tests.

***If you think you have been exposed to HIV in the past 72 hours, call Access Health Louisiana at the Pythian clinic at (504) 226-2976 and ask to see a provider about post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP). 

Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) means taking antiretroviral therapy (ART) medicines after being potentially exposed to HIV to prevent becoming HIV positive. It is very important that you contact us immediately if you think you have been exposed to HIV because PEP is most effective within the first 72 hours after an exposure.

The OraQuick oral swab test used by GetCheckedAHL can give you accurate results 3 months from exposure. Most people will develop antibodies to HIV within this period of time. If you test within 3 months of possible exposure and the result is negative, you may want to take the test again once you pass the 3 month mark. 

These tests can only be used to test for HIV. If you need to be tested for pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections, please contact Access Health Louisiana at the Pythian clinic at (504) 226-2976 to set up an appointment.

Get Your Test.

You can request a home-based test three different ways:

  1. Fill out the request form online below. This is the preferred method because the information you provide will be almost everything we need to get you registered and mail your test kit to you. We will be in touch within 24 hours of you completing the form; or
  2. Email hometest@accesshealthla.org with your name and phone number. We will be in touch within 24 hours to get you registered; or
  3. Call Access Health Louisiana at the Pythian clinic at (504) 226-2976 and request a home-based HIV test kit. You will be linked to a testing navigator who will get you registered.

Once you complete your request, you will be registered as an Access Health Louisiana patient and the kit will be mailed to your house or your preferred shipping location. Our test kits can be mailed to residents across southeast Louisiana.

Your privacy matters. Everything you tell us, whether through the online form or a phone call, is confidential. We will need your name and an address where you can receive mail so we can send you the kit. The test kit will be packaged in plain materials and discreetly labeled.

Fill out the request form to receive a free, at-home HIV test kit.  Your privacy matters. Everything you tell us is confidential. We need your name and address so we can send you the kit. The package will be unmarked and discreetly labeled.

What’s in the kit?

GetCheckedAHL uses the OraQuick rapid HIV test. This test is the first FDA-approved oral swab in-home test for HIV-1 and HIV-2. An oral swab test does not require blood and produces results within 20 minutes. When used as directed, the OraQuick oral fluid test can detect 91.7 percent of people who are infected with HIV and 99.9 percent of people who are not infected with HIV.

The kit will also include informational resources on sexual health and Access Health Louisiana services.

How to Test.

After you request the test kit, our testing navigator will contact you to register you as a patient and set your virtual testing appointment.

You do not need insurance for this appointment and there is no copay required for this service.  Nor will you need to change your primary care provider if you have a personal doctor already that you see regularly.

During this appointment, the navigator will walk you through the “how to” of the test and chat with you while you wait for results. These tests are rapid oral swab kits and they should produce results within 20 minutes. After you receive your results, our testing navigator will explain what they mean and recommend next steps in the case of both a positive and negative test.

While you can take the test on your own, we do not recommend skipping the virtual appointment. Our team of trained healthcare professionals is here to offer counseling and support throughout the testing process. If you have any questions about the virtual appointment, please email us at hometest@accesshealthla.org or call the home testing warmline at (504) 500-8904.

The at-home HIV test is safe and easy.  GetCheckedAHL uses the OraQuick rapid HIV test. You will swab the inside of your mouth and get the result in 20 minutes.

If you think you have been exposed to HIV without any form of protection, take a deep breath. PEP — or post-exposure prophylaxis — can lower your chances of getting HIV. PEP must be taken within 72 hours (three days) after you were exposed to HIV, but the sooner you start it, the better.

Understanding your results.

If your test results may cause you stress or anxiety, our team of behavioral health experts are available for appointments.

At AHL, we have tools to help you remain HIV negative. Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is a safe, daily pill that, if taken as directed, significantly reduces the chances of people getting HIV. Taking PrEP and getting regularly tested for sexually transmitted infections can help reduce the risks of acquiring HIV infection. If you are interested in getting on PrEP, we can link you to an expert HIV/STI specialist who can prescribe you PrEP and other sexual health resources.

If you test positive, take a deep breath… we are here for you. We will offer you counseling and support during the virtual appointment and link you to care with an expert HIV specialist on the same day. We will ask you to come into an AHL clinic as soon as possible for follow-up labs or help to schedule you an appointment with your current medical provider if you already have one.

It is important for people who test positive for HIV to start medical care and take medicine to treat HIV as soon as possible after diagnosis. At AHL, all individuals who test positive for HIV are offered starter packs of medications until their prescription is filled. We will get you into an AHL clinic for follow-up labs on the same or next day, at which point you will receive your antiretroviral (ART) starter pack. Case managers are available to assist with applying for all sources of financial assistance a person is eligible for receiving to pay for the costs of on-going medications.

HIV is unlike many other viruses because the human body can never completely get rid of it. However, taking HIV medicine as prescribed can make your viral load, or the amount of virus in your body, very low. This is called viral suppression. When your viral load gets so low that a test can’t detect it, it is known as undetectable. If your viral load stays undetectable you have no risk of transmitting HIV to an HIV-negative sexual partner. This is known as U=U, or Undetectable = Untransmittable.

People with HIV live long and healthy lives when they get and stay on treatment. Our care teams at Access Health Louisiana will provide you with resources and support to help you understand your new diagnosis and manage your sexual health care needs.

Questions?

If you have any questions about the program, you can email us at hometest@accesshealthla.org or call the home testing warmline at (504) 500-8904.

Please Rush My Free HIV Home Testing Kit

  • I would love to receive an Access Health Louisiana free HIV Home Testing Kit. I understand that this test is completely confidential and that I may administer the test in the privacy of my own home. I also understand that support is available from a medical professional to help guide me through the testing instructions. To access this information, I need to call (504) 500-8904.
 

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