Health services prepare for World AIDS day

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Universally recognised World Aids Day symbol © JMU Journalism

Universally recognised World AIDS Day symbol © JMU Journalism

NHS services across Liverpool are gearing up in preparation of World AIDS day in a bid to raise awareness about the disease in the city.

World AIDS Day is held every year on December 1st and is preceded by National HIV testing week in the UK during the last week of November.

The Liverpool Community Health specialist HIV Community Nursing team, the Armistead Centre, Sahir House and St Bride’s Church have all come together for free testing and awareness events.

Starting on November 23rd and running until December 5th, the organisations will run free confidential AIDs tests, where the results are available on the same day.

Events will also be held at the Armistead Centre on Hannover Street about the education of AIDs.

Tommy McIlravey, CEO of Sahir House said: “Liverpool has a high rate of late diagnosis of HIV. Infections are still on the increase so by offering HIV testing in a variety of community venues we hope will increase the uptake.”

Statistics from the UK National AIDS Trust state that close to 90,000 people received specialist care for HIV in the UK last year, with almost 110,000 people are living with the disease. That number is steadily increasing on an annual basis.

The North of England also accounted for 18% of those who received the specialist treatment for HIV last year.

YouTube: St Bride’s Liverpool

A World AIDS Day vigil will also be held at the Great George Street Chapel on December 1st at 6pm until 7:30pm, where a number of guest speakers will talk on the stigma of the disease and the need to get rid of it.

There will also be a chance to mourn those who have died as a result of HIV infection.

For more information on any of the events or testing, contact the Armistead Centre on 0151 247 6560 or the Royal Liverpool Hospital on 0151 706 2620.

About Connor Bennett, JMU Journalism