“My Health is Sexy” campaign brings HIV testing to campus

The Wellness Centre has partnered with Interior Health to bring free and confidential HIV testing to the TRU campus.

Chelsea Corsi, who runs the Wellness Centre, said that testing is quick and easy.

“If you are sexually active it is a really good idea to get tested, there can be some fear and anxiety if you are in a higher risk group in terms of men having sex with men or if you are an IV drug user, it is highly recommended you get tested frequently.

“There are two different types of testing. There is a new test described as the one-minute ‘poke test’ where the individual is poked with a small contraption, and the test result is revealed in a minute,” Corsi said.

Based on recent surveys by Health Canada, it is estimated that every three hours a person is infected with HIV in Canada. In B.C., it’s estimated that approximately 3,500 people are living with HIV and unaware of their status. There has been an eight per cent increase in HIV cases since 2011 and HIV is most easily transmitted during the first few months after infection.

“If you come for an HIV test and are at risk for other STIs (sexually transmitted infections), the clinic will test you for that,” Corsi said.

Testing is available on the last Thursday of every month, with the next session on March 26 in the TRU Health Clinic in OM 1463. Appointments are recommended, but drop-ins are also accepted if there is space.

TRU students and employees who aren’t able to make it to the clinic can access the Kamloops Public Health Office at 519 Columbia St. The Public Health Office can also meet individuals at a mobile location anywhere at anytime.

“This team is all about reducing barriers. They will meet you at music festivals or under a bridge,” Corsi said.

Chelsea Corsi can be contacted at the Wellness Centre at 250-828- 5010 or by email at ccorsi@tru.ca.