Self-testing HIV kits are now available from Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust’s (CNWL) online Freedoms Shop. The UK’s first legally approved HIV self-testing kit is on sale for £29.95.
Using a very small amount of blood from a finger prick sample to detect the presence of HIV antibodies, the kit is the first of its kind in the UK as it allows individuals to receive their HIV results within 15-minutes in the comfort of their own home.
The Freedoms Shop is stocking the HIV self-testing kits for people who prefer not to come to the clinic for an HIV test.
It is estimated that around 26,000 people in the UK are unaware they have the virus and are unknowingly responsible for the majority of onwards transmissions. Almost half of newly diagnosed cases in 2013 in the UK were diagnosed later than treatment should have started, affecting health and life expectancy.
Testing at home means those individuals who do not currently arrange an NHS HIV test can discreetly test themselves and get their results when it’s convenient to them and in a place of their choosing. The test comes with a bag in which the used testing kit can be safely sealed and disposed of in household waste.
Mark Maguire, CNWL’s Service Director Sexual Health and HIV, said;
“This is a very exciting development in HIV testing, the intention isn’t to compete with NHS Services, like those offered by CNWL, but to offer a choice to those people who, for whatever reason, are unable to access traditional services. Using these kits will help to normalise HIV testing and help people to take responsibility for their own healthcare. We provide the option for people to get tested in a clinic, and now for the first time people across the country can test and get their results in a setting that they might be more conformable with.”
The HIV test is produced by BioSURE a company specialising in the provision of rapid in-vitro diagnostic testing solutions.
Visit the Freedoms Shop webite to find out more: www.freedoms-shop.com.