Coastal Health District hosts free HIV and Aids testing clinics

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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Local experts are bringing awareness to HIV and Aids education, testing, and treatment through free events. The Coastal Health District Prevention Program will host clinics starting today.

Local health experts said statistics dictate 1.2 million people in the United States are living with HIV, but one in eight do not know they have it. Georgia’s health department recommended people in the community utilize the free testing opportunities to help prevent the health epidemic from growing.

The Coastal Health District is hosting free, confidential, and painless testing clinics throughout February in observance of National Black HIV and Aids Awareness Day. According to the Center for Disease Control, 43 percent of all HIV diagnoses in the U.S. in 2017 were African American patients.

Sally Silbermann, the Public Information Officer for the Coastal Health District, said they want to create open conversations about the illness to help people understand that there are treatments and free testing options available.

“Knowing your status can help protect you and your partner, um and ultimately our community. And the only way to know your status is to get tested. Um, again, it doesn’t take very long, it isn’t painful and you’re doing your part to keep yourself healthy and our community healthy,” Silbermann said.

The following is a list of the upcoming clinics and their locations:
Thursday, February 6
12:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Georgia Southern University, Armstrong Campus, Savannah

Friday, February 7
11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Walgreens, 2270 U.S. Hwy. 17, Richmond Hill

Saturday, February 8
12:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Savannah Civic Center (Black Heritage Festival)

Monday, February 10
12:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Georgia Southern University, Liberty Campus, Hinesville

Wednesday, February 12 and February 19
Time TBD
Savannah State University

Thursday, February 13
11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
College of Coastal Georgia, Brunswick

Silbermann said if you cannot make it to one of the upcoming events, the Department of Public Health offers free HIV and Aids testing. Click HERE for more information.

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