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Given the high rates of infection in the state, New York Health officials are urging residents to seek HIV testing or accept the procedure if a medical professional offers it to them.
Health Commissioner Dr. Nirav Shah said that one out of every five New Yorkers who have HIV are unaware of their infection. This makes testing a high priority. With new state laws that require any patient in a primary care or hospital setting be offered HIV testing, he said that it has never been easier for a person to find out their status.
"With nearly 130,000 New Yorkers currently living with HIV/AIDS and over 4,000 newly diagnosed each year, New York continues to be an epicenter of the HIV epidemic," Dr. Shah said. "The state's new HIV testing law makes it easier than ever to get tested for HIV when you visit your health care provider. I urge New Yorkers to say 'yes' to the test."
Nationally, there are more than 1 million individuals infected with HIV, many of whom do not know it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The agency recommends HIV testing as one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of the disease.
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