Testing for HIV/AIDS recommended for all ages 13 to 64

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To The Editor,

Do you know that one out of five individuals with HIV, is not aware that they are infected? I have had the privilege to volunteer with HARC (HIV/ AIDS/Resource Center) at Siena Heights University. HARC is a private non-profit organization dedicated to providing HIV related services to the community through compassionate direct care, prevention, and outreach activities. On Monday, Nov. 26, HARC staff offered free anonymous HIV testing from 5 – 9 p.m. at Siena Heights University in Adrian at Dominican Hall. The testing was open to all members of the Lenawee County Community. This is the first time in Lenawee County in about 10 years to get tested free and anonymous, without a physicians order. Lenawee County Health Department offers condoms for a donation, located at 1040 S. Winter St. Suite 2328.

Here are some facts that are eye opening to me and may be to others in the community. The numbers are daunting — 19,500 Michigan residents are currently living with HIV. Over 12,000 of these individuals live in Southeast Michigan. The CDC (Center of Disease Control and Prevention), recommends that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64, be tested for HIV. Youth as young as 13 years of age can be tested without parent or guardian consent. HIV can affect any individual no matter your age, ethnic/racial, and sexual orientation.

I want to thank the following organizations, businesses, and schools for their assistance to get the word out to the community: Siena Heights University, JCC — Adrian Campus, Daily Telegram, WLEN Radio, Lenawee County Health Department, Lenawee County Library, Adrian Public Library, Lenawee Community Mental Health Authority, Dr. Beaubien, Carter Rehab, Central Michigan 211, ZZ Sports Bar & Grill, Mandy’s, PFLAG of Lenawee, Wheelock’s, Adrian Gold & Silver Exchange, and First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). I apologize if I have left any organization out.

I would like to give a special thanks to Peter (SHU Campus Events Management) and Marlene (SHU Campus Nurse) for letting HARC use their facilities. I want to thank Randy (Volunteer Test Counselor from HARC). And lastly, Leon Golson from HARC for providing flyers and promoting the testing.

Helpful websites can be found at www.hivaidsresource.org and www.cdc.gov.
We are hoping to have another testing for citizens in the community in the near future.

Get tested, it may save your life.

Scott A. Marvin
Diversity Outreach Coordinator (Lenawee RICC)
Adrian




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