Free and confidential HIV testing is available at BHA Leeds Skyline, 9.00 am – 4.30 pm on weekdays. You don’t need to book an appointment unless you need the services of an interpreter.
On arrival, we will discuss with you the reasons you feel you need a test, and decide which is the most appropriate service for you. We can offer HIV testing, plus the 3-in-1 STI/pregnancy test. Please note, this is for under 25’s only. You don’t have to use your real name, and if you feel uncomfortable with any of the questions, we won’t make you answer them.
Our trained workers will talk to you about HIV testing and answer any questions you may have about HIV.
We use a finger prick blood test to take a small amount of blood and results are available within a few minutes. We will facilitate any onward referrals needed, and support you regardless of the result with our dedicated team of support workers.
If you don’t get a negative result, we will make the arrangements for you to have a further blood test to confirm the result. We do this because occasionally, the tests we use can pick up other things apart from HIV. The worker will discuss this with you more when you test. If you feel you would also like further emotional support, we can refer you directly into our HIV support service and link you up with a worker who will help you through the next stages.
Through our community work, we also provide HIV testing in local African community groups, centres and businesses.
If you have put yourself at risk of HIV infection within the last 72 hours, you can attend your local sexual health centre or A and E and request PEP. This needs to be within 72 hours of potential exposure, and consists of a months course of anti-HIV treatment. The closer in time from the exposure will mean the medication has a better chance of preventing HIV transmission from occuring.
When should I test?
It takes 12 weeks for the antibodies to HIV infection to show up in your blood. This is called the window period. In this time, it is not advisable to test as your result may not be accurate.
If you test within the window period, we will always advise you to come back for a further test at 12 weeks.
If you decide to test at your local sexual health clinic, you can ask for a test which may be able to detect HIV itself, as well as the antibodies, at just 4 weeks. This will involve taking blood intravenously (from the arm), and is different from the finger prick tests we use at BHA Leeds Skyline. You will usually have your results in 2 weeks, and you are welcome to call us at any time during this process to get support and advice.