Ealing Council supports first London-wide HIV prevention campaign

Throughout Christmas and into the new year, posters and leaflets are being distributed across Ealing and greater London in pubs, bars and other public places.

London has the highest rates of sexually transmitted infections in England, with 33,863 Londoners diagnosed with HIV.  Most London boroughs, including Ealing have a high prevalence rate. Across the UK it’s estimated there are nearly 26,000 people with HIV who do not know they have it. Ealing has signed up to the Do It London campaign to reduce the rate of late diagnosis of HIV.

Councillor Hitesh Tailor, the council’s cabinet member for health and adults’ services, said: “Getting tested and practising safe sex is a vital part of looking after your health and reducing the risk of onward transmission of sexually transmitted infections."

Do It London is the public face of the London HIV Prevention Programme, a three-year programme of safer sex promotion, condom distribution and outreach, which represents the 32 London boroughs and the City of London.

Sexual health clinics in Ealing and across Greater London offer free and confidential testing. Details of local clinics are available on the council’s website and on the NHS Choices website.  People who would prefer to self-test for HIV in their own home you can do so using a free kit from the online test centre finder.

Councillor Tailor added: “Testing for HIV is free, confidential and very straightforward; you can HIV test at home or attend a specialist sexual health clinic. Early diagnosis also means treatment is more likely to be successful, leading to near normal life expectancy and healthy, active lives. So if you think you’ve put yourself at risk there are many good reasons to get tested straight away.”

Find out more about the campaign at http://www.doitlondon.org/