In some places blood drawn from a vein is still being used to test for HIV, even though the World Health Organization’s latest recommendations say finger prick rapid tests are more convenient and less painful to clients.
To encourage wider adoption of finger prick testing by health facilities, AHF Vietnam held a workshop on Nov. 18 called “Increasing the Quality of HIV Testing by Using Finger Prick Blood Test” in the capital city of Hanoi.
Among the attendees were health workers who are in charge of HIV testing programs at eight Provincial HIV/AIDS Control Centers (PAC) and HIV technicians at project sites supported by AHF.
Participants had an opportunity to practice HIV testing using finger prick blood samples after receiving training and instructions from an expert of the Testing Department from PAC Hanoi.
AHF has been using and promoting the Rapid Testing model of HIV testing since 2008. In 2015, AHF tested nearly 4 million people around the world using rapid tests.
“Rapid tests are more convenient and provide results quickly, which is very important to attract more people to get tested and make sure that they get their results, and link to care if the results are positive,” said Dr. Nguyen Thi Thu Hang, AHF Vietnam Country Program Manager. “There are still very many people who don’t know their status. We want to make the process as easy and pain-free as possible so that everyone can find out their status and take steps to protect themselves and their loved ones.”