DJ Fat Tony has rubbed shoulders with some of your fav A-list celebs, but this year he wants to use his platform to raise awareness about the importance of getting tested among the gay community.
‘I was scared when I first got tested, it’s natural to feel a bit nervous your first time but it’s important to remember that no matter what the results say, thanks to treatment you can still live your life as normal,’ says Tony.
‘I do believe the gay community as a whole are very much informed about the realities of HIV today, but there are still many of us who are afraid to get tested. Knowing your status is nothing to be afraid of. The fear is in not knowing which is why I encourage everyone to fight the fear and get tested.
‘We could be looking at the possibility of ending new HIV transmissions and stigma altogether. It’s amazing to think that this could soon be a reality, especially when we look back at the devastating impact HIV had on the gay community back in the early 80s.’
Tony makes a very good point – gone are the days when there was no effective treatment for HIV. We now have the tools to stop HIV, but it takes all of us to make it happen. One of these vital tools is testing.
But how you ask? It’s simple: by testing for HIV sooner rather than later, and getting on effective treatment if you get an HIV diagnosis, you lower the chance of damaging your own health, and you can’t pass it on to others.
So if you haven’t tested yet, now is the perfect time to order your FREE test kit, head to local walk-in or make an appointment at your local clinic and get tested today!
You can follow all of the action on Twitter by following @startswith_me and using the hashtag #HIVTestWeek.
Get tested today
There are loads of places and ways to test for HIV. You can find out where to test near you on startswithme.org.uk or order a free postal test, which will be send directly to your door in plain packaging.
If you have any questions about HIV or HIV testing, you can call THT Direct on 0808 802 1222 or visit tht.org.uk/thtdirect.