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Lourdes Emergency Department Offers New HIV Test with Results Under One Minute
Story Number is : 110517107
PROVIDED
Lourdes Health System

 
Provided
Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center has partnered with the New Jersey Department of Health to provide a new HIV testing kit to Lourdes patients that offers a result in under one minute. Called INSTI, and manufactured by BioLytical Laboratories (http://www.biolytical.com), the FDA-approved screening test offers greater than 99 percent accuracy of HIV detection.

The previous HIV test offered at Lourdes took 20 minutes for a test result. Those 20 minutes can feel like an eternity for a patient who is worried about his or her test status, said Kira Berstecher, Director of the HIV Program within the Emergency department at Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center.

“Some patients become so anxious worrying that they leave without finding out their result,” said Berstecher. “Not only does that delay care for positive patients, but it also means others can be at-risk for acquiring the infection if safe measures aren’t taken. The INSTI Test allows us to reduce patient anxiety and start a treatment plan in a fraction of the time we could before. We can also test more patients in a day, allowing more patients access to care.”

The improved test checks for HIV antibodies. For most people, this test will respond to an infection within 25-30 days from the time of exposure. Should a patient have a positive test result, additional testing is required to confirm the test and determine the best course for treatment. This second test can be read as soon as 10 minutes.

For people with a second confirmed reactive test, follow up appointments are scheduled the same or next business day with a specialist.

Both initial and confirmatory tests are performed the same way—blood is collected for the sample with a finger prick.
More than 1.2 million people in the United States are living with a Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection, and almost 1 in 8 are unaware of their infection, according to U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Unfortunately, even with advances in prevention and treatment, HIV infection rates have increased each year.

The CDC recommends that people ages 13 and older get tested at least once per year as a part of routine care. Dependent on risk, recommendations can include testing three to six months after. Referrals for additional services are provided as needed.

Lourdes regularly offers free HIV counseling and testing every day from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., including weekends, at its Emergency department (1600 Haddon Avenue, Camden, NJ) with no appointment necessary.
For questions or more information about HIV testing at Lourdes, contact Kira Berstecher at 856-668-8232, or at berstecherk@lourdesnet.org. Additional information about HIV infection can also be found on the CDC’s website at http://www.cdc.gov/features/hivtesting/.



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