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2 to 3 People A Day Test Positive For HIV In Atlanta Ga



Atlanta is ranked No. 1 among U.S. cities when it comes to the rate of new diagnoses of HIV.
Experts say that's because routine HIV testing is not offered in the places where most people get their health care. By the time patients are diagnosed in Atlanta, almost one third have advanced to clinical AIDS
Since starting a routine testing program in 2013, Grady Hospital has diagnosed an average of two or three patients with HIV every single day.
“This is something that keeps me awake at night in Atlanta," Dr. Abigail Hankin-Wei said.
She runs Grady’s FOCUS HIV testing program. It’s the only emergency department in the city that offers a HIV test to every patient regardless of why they came in.
“When we diagnose patients with HIV, the first time we are telling them they’ve been infected with HIV, we know that among our patients at Grady, nearly half of them have AIDS the day we diagnose them," said Hankin-Wei.  
There are at least 50 places you can get tested in the Atlanta area.
“Despite that, there are patients who aren’t going to get those tests. And they aren’t going for a decade," Hankin-Wei said. 
Diagnosing people to get people on treatment is our best method to prevent further transmission,"  Wendy Armstrong, the director of the Ponce de Leon Center, an AIDS care facility in Atlanta, said.
Effective treatment can make the risk of HIV transmission almost non-existent, Armstrong said. But nationally, according to the CDC, an estimated 14 percent of people with HIV or AIDS do not know they’re infected.  

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