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Local clinic offers free HIV testing, support and awareness on World Aids Day

Published: Dec. 1, 2020 at 2:44 PM CST
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DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) -December 1st is World AIDS Day and you probably saw people wearing red ribbons.

It’s a symbol of awareness and support for people living with HIV.

The number of cases of HIV continues to grow in the state of Alabama.

At the end of 2018, 13,902 Alabamians were living with HIV.

Alabama is experiencing a shift in the age distribution of newly diagnosed HIV infections as the number of infected adolescents and young adults (13 to 29-year-olds) are competing with the older groups who once dominated.

The CDC says 1 in 6 people with HIV is unaware of their status.

That’s why everyone is encouraged aged 13 to 64 to get tested for HIV once a year.

Medical Advocacy and Outreach in Dothan held a know your status event and offering free HIV testing today in honor of World Aids Day and they also provided information about the disease.

“To help prevent this we do think that it is important to educate the community, talk more about what’s going on with how it’s transmitted and how to prevent it and it will help lower the risk if we discussing it more, getting more education out about it,” says MAO education outreach coordinator Neice Danzey.

The clinic held a balloon release and candle lighting to show support for those living with HIV and honor those fallen to AIDS.

Medical Advocacy and Outreach is hosting a People Helping People food drive.

The clinic offers specialty, primary, dental and behavioral care for people living with h-i-v and other chronic conditions.

The food will go to their clients to lessen stress, so they focus more on their health.

The clinic is collecting non-perishable foods like canned and boxed dry soups, canned vegetables and meat products.

Low sodium and low sugar options are particularly welcome.

“We’re in a hard time right now so they may need assistance to get ready for Christmas or just in general because it has been difficult times that we’ve all been dealing with so I think that food or anything that can be donated will help,” says Danzey.

Donations can be dropped off at 1865 Honeysuckle Road suite 3 three until December 17th.

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