Free HIV testing available at UCO campus
Free rapid HIV testing is available to students for the first time at the Women’s Research Center and BGLTQ+ Student Center in Thatcher Hall, Room 106 at the University of Central Oklahoma.
“Thanks to our partnership with Diversity Family Health, testing is free” Director of the Women’s Research Center and BGLTQ+ Student Center Lindsey Churchill said. “The testing just involves a finger prick, and you get your results in 15 minutes.”
The testing sessions are completely confidential, and no insurance is required to request a test. The tests are offered from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday.
There are no requirements to receive the test, although students are encouraged to bring their ID, Churchill said.
HIV prevalence within college-aged students may be higher than many think, making this service something that could potentially help many students.
“Since a large number of college students have unprotected sex, college students can be considered a risk group,” Churchill said. “The CDC reported in 2018 that 21 percent of HIV infections occurred in youth populations (13-24 years old).”
UCO also offers other sexual health services to students, free of charge, to help students stay as safe and healthy as possible.
“At the Center we have free condoms and lube. All are welcome to come in whenever we are open and get these items. We can put them in a bag for you, so you are discreet. We also are working on getting free pregnancy tests since we have some students who are scared/embarrassed to buy them,” Churchill said.
“We want to offer a shame-free space for UCO students to feel comfortable. We know that sexual health is part of overall health and well-being for our students” she said. “We also work with our community partners to periodically have STI testing and HPV vaccines for students for free.”
To learn more about taking charge of your sexual health visit the Women’s Research Center and BGLTQ+ Student Center or contact Churchill at firstname.lastname@example.org.