Fast Track Cardiff & Vale is currently conducting a pilot exercise with Butetown Health Centre to offer free home testing to all patients. Anyone with a postcode in Butetown or Grangetown can order a free test from here.
There are 2 kinds of test on offer. People in groups of heightened risk of HIV will be offered an immediate self test where they will be able to access their own result immediately. Other people will be referred to the Frisky Wales Test and Post service and will receive a free home test kit that they can post back to receive a result. Both forms of test are completely confidential and private.
This is a pilot project to see how many people would be interested in getting a HIV test from their GP practice. It will also support our efforts to reduce HIV related stigma, making testing a normal part of healthcare.
What is it?
GP practices will send 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.
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.
What do I have to do?
GP surgeries should be prepared for enquiries around HIV testing and offer advice and guidance to patients concerned about their result.
What if someone tests positive for HIV?
For those taking the immediate self test they will be encouraged to contact either the Terrence Higgins Trust helpline/ website, their GP or the Cardiff Royal Infirmary.
Terrence Higgins Trust will support individuals who may have a positive result, directing them to Cardiff Royal Infirmary.
If a patient contacts you about a positive result, you should contact Cardiff Royal Infirmary on 02921 835208. Lines are open between 9.00am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday.
Effective HIV treatment means someone can expect to live as long as anyone else and it can prevent them from passing the virus on. You may wish to reassure patients that now they know their status they can make the best choices for their health and for others.
You can also contact THT for advice.
Other GP clusters wishing to participate in a similar project please contact firstname.lastname@example.org