All new patients registering at this practice are being offered an HIV test as part of their routine care.
The Chief Medical Officer for England has recommended that in areas with a high rate of HIV infection, all new patients registering with GP Practices are tested for HIV. Lewisham has a high rate of HIV infection and is taking part in a Department of Health pilot of HIV testing in GP practices. All pregnant women are already tested for HIV infection as part of routine care.
There are many benefits to having an HIV test:
- Having an HIV test is the only way to know for sure whether you have HIV or not.
- If you have HIV but it is not diagnosed, it will slowly damage your immune system. If it is diagnosed, your health can be monitored and you can take treatment to help keep you well.
- If you have HIV but don’t know you have it, you could pass it on without realising it.
- Knowing whether or not you have HIV means you can make informed decisions about your health and your future.
A decision to decline this test will not affect your care.