One of the most important things all sexually-active gay men should do is get routinely tested for HIV. If you do have HIV, getting into care sooner than later is very important. Many men have HIV and don’t know it because there are often no symptoms.
All sexually-active men who engage in oral or anal sex with another guy, even with a condom, should get tested at least every year. Depending on the number of partners and condom use, some gay guys should get tested every three months. Take the HIV risk quiz to find out how often you should get tested.
HIV Testing at AIDS Project Rhode Island
AIDS Project Rhode Island offers walk-in rapid HIV testing every Tuesday from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm, and on Thursdays from 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm. They also test any weekday from 9:00 – 5:00 pm by appointment. The test is free, anonymous, and no blood is involved. For more information check out the APRI website, or contact Christian Battey at 401- 831-5522, ext. 3824 or Christion@aidsprojectri.org. APRI also does couples HIV testing, so feel free to bring a partner with you. Couples testing information is available at the bottom of this page.
APRI also regularly does HIV testing at the Megaplex (call them 401-780-8769) to find out when the next clinic is.
Other HIV testing options in Rhode Island include talking to your doctor, buying a HIV home test kit from a pharmacy, or checking out the Rhode Island Department of Health website.
STD Testing at The Miriam Hospital
The Miriam Hospital offers free testing for other STDs (syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia). The clinic is open primarily on Wednesdays and Fridays from 12:30 pm to 3:30pm. Testing is also available on Thursdays 12:30pm to 3:30pm if needed. Please email Dr. Philip A. Chan with any questions.
Couples HIV Testing at AIDS Project Rhode Island
Got a special guy in your life? Want to take your relationship to the next step but have never talked about HIV status? Or just think it’s time for you and your partner to get tested for HIV?
You are not alone. Bringing up the topic of HIV and talking about it the first time is not always easy. However, it’s an important topic for gay men in Rhode Island, especially because new HIV infections among men who have sex with other guys are on the rise, guys can have HIV and not know it, and the majority of HIV transmission among men is from a primary partner.
AIDS Project Rhode Island offers a convenient way for men to come in and talk about HIV, as well receive HIV testing services together. Through APRI’s couples HIV testing program, couples go through the entire HIV testing process together while sitting privately in the same room and learning each other’s results at the same time. Here are some other aspects of the HIV testing experience that make it easier and less stressful for couples:
- All testing is anonymous. You never have to provide your name or any other personal information.
- The counselors who conduct HIV testing are very friendly gay men who have been specially trained and have extensively worked with gay couples.
- No one is asked about previous partners or their sexual past.
- The service is totally FREE.
The primary goal of the testing is just to help gay couples get a peace of mind and have a healthy relationship going forward. Over 99% of guys who have gotten tested together at APRI say they would recommend it to their friends.
More information is available at www.aidsprojectri.org. Or give Christion Battey a call at 401-699-1501 to make an appointment.