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Prevent

Hyacinth HIV Testing: Free, Fast, and Confidential

About 1 in 7 Americans who are HIV positive don’t know it. That’s significant because about 40% of transmission occurs among people who are unaware they are HIV positive. It’s also why HIV testing is among our most important services.

Schedule an Appointment

You can schedule an appointment to be tested in any of these ways: calling the regional office where you’d like to be tested; sending an email to testing@hyacinth.org; or via the Hyacinth Testing Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/hyacinthtesting).

Walk-ins are welcome; however, we recommend you call ahead to make sure a member of our testing staff will be available.

What to Expect

HIV testing at Hyacinth is free, confidential, and fast. It takes only about 20 minutes to get the results.

A small blood sample will be collected from your finger. While the test is processed, you’ll meet with a counselor to discuss sexual and/or needle sharing practices and HIV risk reduction strategies.

A staff member will discuss test results with you as well as provide appropriate healthcare and service referrals.

All clients who are interested in getting tested must sign a consent form.

Reaching the Community

Every June 27, National HIV Testing Day, our regional offices and mobile units offer HIV testing in partnership with Greater than AIDS and Walgreens Corporation. It’s an effective way to test as many people as possible throughout New Jersey!

Hyacinth’s mobile units can also be requested by local colleges, pharmacies, churches, and other non-profit agencies. If you’re interested in one of our mobile units visiting your event, town, or company, please email Testing Manager Jessica Diaz at jdiaz@hyacinth.org.

U=U (Undetectable Equals Untransmittable)

It’s great to be you! If you’re living with HIV, it’s even better to be U=U, or Undetectable Equals Untransmittable.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention describes U=U this way: “A person with HIV who takes HIV medicine as prescribed and gets and stays virally suppressed, or ‘undetectable,’ can stay healthy and has effectively no risk of sexually transmitting HIV to HIV-negative partners.”

The only way to determine if you are undetectable is through regular blood work. It is important to achieve and maintain an undetectable status to minimize any risk of transmission. Hyacinth will work closely with you and your partner to help maintain treatment adherence, provide information about PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) if you or your partner are interested, and discuss your sexual health so that the focus is on each other and not HIV.

Contact the Hyacinth Health & Wellness Clinic to schedule an appointment for consultation and blood work.

For more information, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Preventions website.

Make a Donation

Commemorate Hyacinth’s 35 years in the fight to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic in New Jersey. No act of generosity is too small to make a difference.

PrEP:

People at risk for HIV, whether from sex or injection drug use, can significantly lower their chances of infection through pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP. It involves taking one of two approved HIV medicines, Truvada® or Descovy®, every day. Clinical studies show PrEP reduces the risk of getting HIV from sex by about 99% and from injection drug use by at least 74%.

Identifying Who PrEP Can Help

Hyacinth’s PrEP counselors follow federal guidelines when screening candidates for the PrEP program. Generally, PrEP is recommended for HIV-negative people who:

  • have had anal or vaginal sex in the past 6 months with an HIV-positive partner
  • inject drugs and have an HIV-positive partner or share needles or syringes

Hyacinth’s PrEP counselors educate clients who have tested negative for HIV about the PrEP program and how it might help them. They conduct program intake interviews to better understand each client’s sexual behavior and other lifestyle choices. Next, PrEP candidates are referred to a healthcare provider for a physical screening and additional tests. If the client is cleared by the doctor to enter PrEP, he or she will receive a prescription for one of the approved HIV medications.

Financial Assistance

HIV medications can be expensive even when insurance significantly lowers the cost. Hyacinth PrEP counselors can help you complete paperwork for programs that reduce co-pays for insured clients or provide uninsured patients with the medication free of charge.

The healthcare providers Hyacinth works with accept insurance, and most can cover some costs through charity care or other hospital programs. Payment for blood work is sometimes covered under insurance, but PrEP counselors may also be able to financially assist with these payments.