Benefits of Knowing your HIV Status

HIV testing has never been quicker or easier than it is today – and it has significant benefits for individuals who are infected with HIV and those who are not. For those who have HIV, testing is the gateway to treatment and care. Highly effective treatments make it possible to live a long, healthy life with HIV. However, one third of people learn they are infected with HIV less than a year before being diagnosed with AIDS, meaning they have already been infected for many years and may not fully benefit from treatment. Testing also helps reduce the transmission of HIV. Early diagnosis allows those infected to take steps to protect their partners from infection, and early treatment can
lower viral load, and reduce the risk of transmitting HIV to others by 96 percent.

And, for people who do not have HIV, testing is just as critical because this information can help link them with important prevention services so they can remain HIV-free. Thanks to increased testing efforts, of the approximately 1.2 million Americans living with HIV, 87 percent have been diagnosed and are aware of their infection.