Renae Crutchfield, Public Information Officer
214.819.6329 (office) 214.394.8109 (cell)
Zachary Thompson, Director
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DCHHS offers free HIV testing raising awareness for Hispanic/Latino community
DALLAS (Oct. 13, 2017) – In observance of National Latino AIDS Awareness Day (NLAAD) Dallas County Health and Human Services (DCHHS) is offering free HIV testing Monday Oct.16. The event will be held at the Mexican Consulate located at 1200 Riverbend in Dallas from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Partnering with the AIDS Interfaith Network – Dallas, DCHHS will also be offering free testing for Syphilis, Gonorrhea and Chlamydia.
NLAAD is observed Oct. 15 of each year to increase awareness of the impact of HIV/AIDS on the Hispanic/Latino population. The NLAAD campaign promotes HIV testing and prevention, and provides information on access to care to Hispanic/Latino communities.
“Since the beginning of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the rate of AIDS diagnosis for Hispanics/Latinos has continuously increased at disproportionate rates,” said Zachary Thompson, DCHHS director.” “Our focus with this initiative is to encourage people to get educated, get tested, get treated and get involved.”
In 2015, Hispanics/Latinos accounted for 26 percent of all new diagnoses of HIV in Dallas County. Nationwide, Hispanics/Latinos accounted for about 25 percent of all new diagnoses, despite representing about 18 percent of the total US population (CDC).
“Individuals can take charge of their long-term health by first knowing their HIV status,” said Dr. Christopher Perkins, DCHHS medical director/health authority. “As soon as an individual is diagnosed with HIV, they can begin managing the virus by receiving early intervention and treatment, and by living a healthy lifestyle.”
DCHHS regularly offers testing for sexually transmitted diseases at the main clinic located at 2377 North Stemmons Freeway in Dallas. Clinic hours are from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday and Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
For more information about DCHHS STD/HIV testing services, visit www.dallascounty.org/department/hhs/stdclinics.html