Panama City, Florida—National HIV Testing Day (NHTD) is observed annually on June 27 to encourage people to know their HIV status so they can take charge of their health. This year’s NHTD theme, “HIV testing is personal care.” The theme emphasizes that HIV testing is an act of self-care. Knowledge of status is the gateway to engaging in prevention or treatment services that enable individuals, regardless of status, to live long and healthy lives.

In 2020, 3,504 people were diagnosed with HIV in Florida. At the end of this year, 117,477 Floridians were confirmed living with HIV. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that an additional 18,200 Floridians were living with HIV but unaware of it.

Everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 should get tested at least once, and some people should get tested more often. Knowing your HIV status is just the start. What you do to stay healthy after that largely depends on your results. Early diagnosis of HIV leads to more effective treatment, so getting tested and knowing your HIV status is crucial for your health.

Knowing your status is the first step to effective HIV prevention. People living with HIV who take antiretroviral drugs as prescribed and who reach and maintain an undetectable viral load cannot transmit HIV to their sexual partners. People without HIV should talk to a health care provider to determine appropriate prevention strategies, which may include taking PrEP, using condoms, and/or regular testing.

“Caring for our well-being and that of our communities is vital,” said Sandon S. Speedling, MHS, CPM, CPH, Administrator and Health Officer, Florida Department of Health in Bay County. “Getting tested for HIV is an important tool in this effort and gives you important information on how to take care of your health.”

Watch NHTD with us!

The Florida Department of Health in Bay County will participate in the following events:

Date: June 23 – Holmes County

Event activities: Incentives, information and home test kits,

Address: Piggly Wiggly – 911 N Waukesha St, Bonifay, Florida 32425

Time: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Date: June 24 – Bay County

Event activities: Rapid HIV/Hepatitis C test, incentives, information and home test kits

Address: Words Greatest Baby Shower hosted by Healthy Start – 3203 Minnesota Ave, Panama City, FL 32405

Time: 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Date: June 24 – Jackson County

Event activities: Rapid HIV/Hepatitis C test, incentives, information and home test kits

Address: Grocery Outlet – In partnership with BASIC of NWFL – 4230 Lafayette St C, Marianna, FL 32446

Time: 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Date: June 26 – Bay County

Event activities: Incentives, information and home testing kits.

Address: Runaway Island – Event is hosted by – Drag Me To Brunch of Bay County – 14521 Front Beach Rd, Panama City Beach, FL 32413

Time: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Date: June 27 – Gulf County

Event activities: HIV/Hepatitis C rapid test, incentives, information and home test kits

Address: Gulf County Health Department – 2475 Garrison Ave, Port St Joe, FL 32456

Time: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time

Date: June 28 – Calhoun County

Event activities: Rapid HIV/Hepatitis C test, incentives, information and home test kits

Address: Calhoun County Health Department – 19611 FL-20 W, Blountstown, FL 32424

Time: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Date: June 29 – Bay County

Event activities: HIV/Hepatitis C rapid test, incentives, information and home test kits

Address: Piggly Wiggly – 1350 15th St, Panama City, FL 32401

Time: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Date: June 30 – Washington County

Event activities: HIV/Hepatitis C rapid test, incentives, information and home test kits

Address: Brickyard Market – In partnership with BASIC of NWFL – 1377 Brickyard Rd, Chipley, FL 32428

Time: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Protect yourself. Have it tested. Know your status. Find out more.

We have the power to prevent and treat HIV. For more information, call 850-872-4455 or 1-800-FLA-AIDS or visit or KnowYourHIVStatus.com.

About the Florida Department of Health

The Florida Department of Health, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Councilstrives to protect, promote and improve the health of all Florida residents through integrated state, county and community efforts.

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