In collaboration with the Cardiff City & South GP Cluster, we are running a HIV home testing scheme in Grangetown and Butetown. Anyone living in these areas of Cardiff can get a free HIV self testing kit.
What is it?
If you live in Butetown or Grangetown your GP practice will be sending out a text message to patients offering a free home testing kit. People in higher risk groups can get a home testing kit through the link. Everyone else will be directed to Frisky Wales for a free postal kit. You can find out which test you are eligible for and request it here.
Home testing is when you get a result at home in 15 minutes. Postal testing is where you take the sample yourself and post it to the lab for testing.
Anyone not eligible for the home test kit can still order a postal kit from Frisky Wales. This involves taking a sample at home and posting it back before getting a result.
Both tests are discreet, easy to do and completely confidential.
About the test
The test checks for HIV antibodies in a small sample of your blood.
The test will be most accurate from three months after exposure to HIV.
You can get someone from Terrence Higgins Trust to take the test with you over video or phone if you’d prefer.
What if I test positive for HIV?
If you’ve taken the immediate home test, you can contact either the Terrence Higgins Trust helpline/ website, your GP or the Cardiff Royal Infirmary on 02921 835208. Lines are open between 9.00am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday.
Effective HIV treatment means you can expect to live as long as anyone else and it can prevent you from passing the virus on. Now you know your status, this will allow you to make the best choices for your health and others.
PrEP and PEP
There is some evidence that HIV self tests may not work as well for people who are taking HIV medication (either for treating HIV, for PrEP or for PEP).
If you’d like a postal test, go to Frisky Wales.
If you’re thinking of starting PrEP or want to find out more, contact your nearest sexual health clinic.
In the event you’ve put yourself at risk of HIV transmission, if you start PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis) within 72 hours it can stop the virus taking hold. Contact your nearest sexual health clinic for more information. If the clinic is closed, you can attend Accident and Emergency or call 111 for guidance.
Terrence Higgins Trust have a list of frequently asked questions on their self testing site.
Sexual health services in Cardiff are provided by Cardiff & Vale University Health Board. Contact Cardiff Royal Infirmary Sexual Health Clinic if you need further testing or advice.
GPs in the Cardiff City & South GP Cluster have been briefed about this scheme, so should also be able to provide support.