National HIV Testing Day
Founded in 1983, the National Association of People with AIDS (NAPWA-US) is the oldest coalition of
people living with HIV/AIDS in the world and the oldest U.S. national AIDS organization. We advocate on behalf of all people
living with HIV and AIDS in order to end the pandemic and human suffering caused by HIV/AIDS. HIV-positive people have a unique
role to play in HIV prevention and promotion of voluntary HIV counseling and testing.
National Association of People with AIDS (NAPWA) started National HIV Testing Day (NHTD) in 1995. Every year, on June 27th,
local organizations across the nation engage with communities to promote early diagnosis and HIV-testing. The Centers for
Disease Control (CDC) estimates that 250,000 of the one million people living with HIV/AIDS in the United States are unaware
of their status. NAPWA realizes that lack of access to treatment and care along with social stigma can make living with HIV
difficult. With early diagnosis, uncertain individuals will know their HIV-status and should be placed in appropriate treatment
and care. During NHTD, we work with our partners, which include thousands of community-based organizations, businesses, health
departments, elected officials, media, and individuals to encourage routine HIV-testing and to promote culturally-apt messages
for those affected by and living with HIV/AIDS.
Early HIV diagnosis is critical, so people who are infected
can fully benefit from available life-saving treatments. Currently, almost 40 percent of people with HIV are not diagnosed
until they already have developed AIDS. That can be up to 10 years after they first became infected with HIV. Finding out
whether you are infected with HIV is the first step to improving your health and the health of your partners and your family.