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Kicks Off National HIV Awareness Month

NEW YORK — As part of National HIV Testing Day (June 27), Planned Parenthood Federation of America is urging women, men, and young people to take charge of their health by learning how to practice safer sex, getting educated about the risks of HIV and scheduling an HIV test. 

“HIV is a serious problem that affects us all. About 1.2 million people in the United States are currently living with HIV, but one in five is unaware of it” said Dr. Vanessa Cullins, Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s vice president for external medical affairs. “Even though HIV is almost entirely preventable, it continues to spread because too many Americans are simply unaware of their HIV status or are unable to access appropriate health care.”

Planned Parenthood recently teamed up with leading organizations like the Magic Johnson Foundation and amfAR to participate in the first ever National HIV Awareness Month (July 2012). The month is designed to reignite our national discourse on the domestic HIV/AIDS epidemic, raise public awareness of HIV/AIDS, end HIV stigma and discrimination, and engage new stakeholders in the fight against the disease. The month coincides with the International AIDS Conference, which will take place in the United States for the first time in more than 20 years.

“By practicing safer sex and getting screened regularly, we can all live longer, healthier, and happier lives,” said Dr. Cullins. “Getting tested can be quick and easy: rapid HIV testing provides results in about 20 minutes. Whether you’re positive or negative, knowing your status can help you and your partners stay healthy.”

When used correctly and consistently, condoms and dental dams are highly effective in preventing the transmission of HIV. Condoms are the only method of birth control that also prevents HIV infection.

Nationwide, Planned Parenthood health centers offer a wide variety of preventive health services, including testing for HIV and other STDs. In 2010, Planned Parenthood health centers provided over 570,000 HIV tests for men and women. 

Planned Parenthood also offers online tools that can help you take charge of your health: visit The Check to figure out if you should get tested for HIV and other STDs, and visit plannedparenthood.org to find the health center nearest you and to schedule an HIV test.



Planned Parenthood Federation of America


Planned Parenthood Federation of America media office: 212-261-4433


June 27, 2012


September 07, 2016