Calvert County Health Department
What is HIV, AIDS?
HIV stands for human immunodeficiency virus, a sexually transmitted disease, which causes the disease called AIDS. HIV weakens your immune system by destroying important cells that fight disease and infection. A deficient immune system cannot protect you. We know that HIV can hide for long periods of time and treatment for HIV can postpone or prevent progression to AIDS.
AIDS stands for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. AIDS is the final stage of HIV infection and it can take years for a person infected with HIV, even without treatment, to reach this stage. Having AIDS means that the virus has weakened the immune system to the point at which the body has a difficult time fighting any infections.
However, with today's new treatments, people who are HIV-positive can live full, active lives, and avoid progressing to AIDS...if the viral infection is known at an early stage. Don't wait. Get tested today!
Who is Most at Risk for HIV and AIDS?
Anyone can get HIV—women and men, straight or gay young and old. If you answer yes to any of the following questions, you should get tested.
- Have you had sex without a condom, even just once?
- Have you had more than one sex partner?
- Have you ever had a sexually transmitted disease?
- Have you ever shared a needle?
How Do You Get Tested for HIV?
Testing for HIV:
- Is FREE
- Is Anonymous -- Completely. No names, no judgments.
- Is Confidential -- No one will know your results but you.
- Is Important--Always know your HIV status. Find out how to avoid getting infected. If positive for HIV, find out how to avoid transmitting the virus to others and get treatment.
The only way to know for sure if you have HIV is to get tested.
What If You Test Positive?
No one has to face this situation alone. The Calvert County Health Department offers free HIV counseling that will:
- Offer information on how to avoid infecting others.
- Refer you to treatment services.
- Help you tell sex partners and anyone you have shared a needle with that you are positive for HIV. It is very important that they get help also.
- You owe it to yourself and those you love to get help.
When and Where is Testing Available?
HIV Counseling and Testing Services:
Appointments for counseling and/or testing are offered at no cost on Tuesdays and Thursdays 8:00 am – 11:00 am and 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
All testing is confidential and anonymous testing is available.
To schedule an appointment, call 410-535-5400, x332, or x334.
For more information on HIV/AIDS prevention and services go to:
Are you POSITIVE or are you NEGATIVE? HIV is F O R E V E R.
Be SMART. Get TESTED. Get TREATED.