On June 29 and 30 and on July 1, 2009, Bronx AIDS Services (BAS) will commemorate National HIV Testing Day by operating six testing locations across the Bronx. This special day serves as a reminder, that as the epidemic of HIV/AIDS in America approaches its fourth decade, awareness of one’s own HIV status has become more important than ever.
BAS is part of The Bronx Knows borough-wide HIV testing campaign, which was launched on National HIV Testing Day one year ago. This year, BAS is collaborating with Montefiore Hospital’s Adolescent AIDS Program, VIP Community Services, Project W.A.V.E., Project Street Beat and the Gallery Church to provide six testing locations giving Bronx residents the opportunity to learn their status in a stress free, confidential environment. This three day program aims to remove the stigma that our society places around HIV testing and to change the unfortunate reality that nearly one quarter of those living with HIV in the United States do not know their status. BAS will provide testing at its Prevention Office located at 953 Southern Boulevard, 2nd floor; at its Adolescent Girls Program (Go Girl!) office at 1910 Arthur Avenue, 6th floor; and at Greater Emmanuel Temple at 4222 3rd Avenue (at Tremont Ave.). Three mobile testing units will also be available: one on Webster Ave. at 169th Street; another at 173rd St. at Washington Ave., and a third on 147th St. at Willis Ave.
The agency offers a variety of services for individuals whether their test result is positive or negative. It sponsors free and confidential HIV testing year round and educational prevention programs for adolescents and adults, with special emphasis placed on populations that have been greatly affected by the HIV virus. Case managers connect HIV positive individuals and their families to counseling and medical care; and attorneys and paralegals provide individuals with legal advice in situations of domestic violence and/or housing crisis. Each of these services is available in English and Spanish.
Since its founding 23 years ago, BAS has become the leading provider of non-hospital based services to Bronx residents affected by HIV/AIDS. It provides services to about 25,000 residents annually. For more information, visit www.basnyc.org.