Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
May 06, 2008 (SKNIS)
After a successful debut at the St. Paul’s Community Centre, the National AIDS Secretariat continues its convenient and confidential, community HIV Testing at the Cayon Primary School on Tuesday, May 13.
The second Community HIV Testing Day will commence at 4:00 p.m. and conclude at 9:00 p.m.
Ms. Lucine Pemberton, Health Educator and Counsellor as well as Coordinator of the Community HIV Testing Day, said that the upcoming event caters to residents of Keys and Cayon. She reminded the St. Kitts and Nevis Information Service that the service was requested by members of the general public, and it caters to residents who work outside of the Basseterre area, or have limited mobility.
Ms. Pemberton explained that just like the HIV Testing Days held in Basseterre, nurses and professional health personnel along with trained Voluntary Counselling and Testing Providers will be on hand, first to counsel then administer the test. The Community HIV Testing Day coordinator was also pleased to reveal that test results should be returned approximately one hour after testing, as once again, AVALON Medical Laboratory will be on site to analyze samples.
Like at St. Paul’s, there will be a condom contest, where competitors try to correctly place a condom on a model of the male sex organ, in the quickest time.
A model of a female sex organ will be used to demonstrate how to insert a female condom and there will also be a dental dam demonstration. A dental dam is a thin square sheath of rubber that should be used over the sex organs during oral sex.
Ms. Pemberton revealed that the dental dam is being promoted, in particular, because whereas previously it was thought that HIV could not be contracted through oral sex, research has shown that the tonsils are susceptible to the virus. Another feature of the evening will be a group counseling session for students, which is scheduled to commence at 4:00 p.m. As customary, all persons who test will be given a free bMobile $10.00 Top Up.
The Community HIV Testing Day Coordinator encouraged residents of Keys and Cayon to attend the evening event.
“Come out and find out your status,” Ms. Pemberton said. “It is of the utmost importance, and if you can bring along your partner, it will be even better. One can lead a productive life with treatment, which includes carrying on safe romantic relationships. This is only possible if one’s HIV status is known.”
Ms. Pemberton revealed that 75 persons tested at the St. Paul’s Community and they are expecting a similar turnout at the Cayon Primary School. She said one encouraging observation at St. Paul’s was that many couples came to be tested together, hence her encouragement for residents of Keys and Cayon.
The Keys and Cayon Community HIV Testing Day takes place Tuesday, May 13 at the Cayon Primary School Hall commencing at 4:00 p.m.