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HIV SERVICES

Via Care is a federally qualified health center dedicated to providing quality healthcare and treatment for our Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer/Non-Conforming community members in the East Los Angeles area. All of our locations are a safe, inclusive space for people to receive compassionate, accurate, non-judgmental and culturally competent care.

We are also committed to providing care to all who need it, so we accept Medi-Cal and most major insurance plans. If you are uninsured, we have enrollers who can help you receive an insurance plan, or we have a sliding scale option which provides you with services for little to no cost.

You can always talk candidly and comfortably with our doctors and other providers, knowing that you’re receiving quality care, regardless of your ability to pay.

What is HIV?

  • HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus. It is the virus that can lead to AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome) if not treated. The human body can’t get rid of HIV completely, even with treatment. So once you get HIV, you have it for life.

  • HIV attacks the body’s immune system, which fights off infections. Over time, with HIV, the body cannot fight off infections and disease. 

  • No effective cure currently exists, but with proper medical care, HIV can be controlled. The medicine used to treat HIV is called antiretroviral therapy or ART.

  • Today, someone diagnosed with HIV and treated before the disease is far advanced can live nearly as long as someone who does not have HIV.

 

How do you get HIV?

HIV is transmitted through blood, semen, pre-cum, vaginal fluids, and breast milk.  The two main ways that people get HIV:

  • Unprotected sexual contact (during anal, vaginal, and possibly oral sex) with someone who has HIV.

  • Sharing needles (shooting drugs or getting tattoos) with someone who has HIV. ​

If you are pregnant and have HIV, you can give it to your baby before or during birth, or when you breastfeed.

Get Tested for HIV

  • The only way to know for sure whether you have HIV is to get tested.

  • CDC recommends that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 get tested for HIV at least once as part of routine health care. 

  • Those at higher risk are recommended to get tested every 3 months.

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HIV Prevention

Today, more tools than ever are available to prevent HIV. Some include:

 

  • Limiting your number of sexual partners

  • Never sharing needles, if you do: use only sterile injection equipment, never share your equipment with others

  • Using condoms the way you have sex : vaginal, anal, oral

  • Talk to your doctor or HIV tester/counselor about new methods like PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) & PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis)

  • Talk to your partner about STDs before having sex

HIV and STI Testing

HIV and STI Testing are available at Via Care. Free, rapid HIV testing is available with results in 15 minutes. HIV testing is recommended at least once a year for all patients, and for higher-risk patients, every three months. STI testing and treatment are available to all patients at Via Care. 

HIV and HCV Care

HIV and HCV Care are offered to those who test positive. Via Care staff will walk you through information about your diagnosis, treatment options, and link you to medical care either at Via Care or through one of our trusted partners. 

HIV Testing FAQs

Should I get tested for HIV?

All adults that are sexually active and or if you share needles are at higher risk of getting HIV and the CDC recommends that they get tested.  Stay healthy and know your status and help your partners stay healthy.

Where do I get tested?

Call 323-268-9191 and book an appointment for a test at our clinic.

How much does it cost?

Rapid HV tests are free and you may qualify for a gift card. Ask us if you qualify.

What HIV test do you offer?

Rapid HIV test:  A rapid HIV test is a fingerpick blood test that gives you results in less than 15 minutes.

HIV blood test: Is a normal blood draw that is sent to a laboratory for analysis and you get your results in less than a week.

 

What if I am HIV positive?

If you test positive for HIV a trained HIV counselor will provide counseling and refer you to an HIV medical provider and book your first appointment. HIV is treatable and treatments are highly effective.

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