Free HIV/AIDS testing in D.C. on Thursday

In observation of National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, free testing will be offered throughout the District on Thursday.

Whitman-Walker Health, a non-profit community health center, will test people at its mobile units at the Anacostia Metro station from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. and at Bachelors Mill, 1104 8th Street SE, from 10 p.m. to 12:30 a.m.

Tests will also be offered at the Elizabeth Taylor Medical Center, 1701 14th Street NW, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and at the Max Robinson Center, 2301 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE.

Washington’s HIV/AIDS problem has been described as an “epidemic” that disproportionately affects African Americans, according to D.C. health officials.

A 2012 study by the D.C. Department of Health found that the HIV infection rate for heterosexual black women in the District’s poorest neighborhoods nearly doubled in two years, from 6.3 percent to 12.1 percent.

No appointment is necessary and there is no charge for the test, according to Whitman-Walker Health.

Also on Thursday, Hall of Fame basketball player Earvin “Magic” Johnson will address business school students and medical personnel at Howard University Hospital. Johnson, who was diagnosed as HIV-positive in 1991, will talk about the stigma of being HIV-positive and about his journey from basketball star to successful entrepreneur. He will speak in the hospital’s Towers Auditorium at about 2 p.m.

 
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