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Time to Test!

Been to Mardi Gras? Well, we hope you had a lot of fun and enjoyed the carnival atmosphere that Sydney offers up to people from all over the world. Without a doubt it’s one of the best international party weekends available.

For revellers, after the music has ended and the lights have come back on, there is always the aftermath of a good time to deal with. At the WA AIDS Council we recommend plenty of rest, water, fresh fruit and vegies… and an STI check.

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It just makes good sense really. Whether you had some action in Sydney, or if it’s just been some time since you had a sexual health check up, why not use times like Mardi Gras and Pride as personal reminders to test for STIs/HIV regularly?

The benefit in testing for STIs is that the majority of them can be cured and the ones that can’t be cured can be treated and managed. Treating or curing STIs makes you generally healthier, prevents long term health complications, and reduces the risk of HIV transmission.

To enable people to get tested more easily we have set up a system whereby you can make an appointment to come into the AIDS Council (664 Murray St, West Perth) for a pre-test discussion and then walk next door to Clinipath for the tests. It is a Medicare based system, so don’t forget your Medicare card. Client feedback of the new service has been positive, for example one client told us “It’s great for me because I know where the AIDS Council is and it’s close to where I work. I can go there during my lunch break and get all the tests I need done.”

There are still sexual health clinics at Royal Perth Hospital, Fremantle Hospital, FPWA, and the anonymous testing at the saunas on Monday nights providing other options for people to use if convenient.

If you require any further information about testing at WAAC, saunas, sexual health clinics, or GPs please call the AIDS Council on 9482 0000.

Ben Bradstreet, Sauna Outreach Officer, Community Education and Prevention Services, WA AIDS Council.

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