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Taking the Test: What's Your Experience?

June 25, 2012


Adam Viera

Adam Viera, Harm Reduction Coalition, New York City

When I was in graduate school, I asked my doctor at the time, who was affiliated with the university health center, for an HIV test. It was a regular six-month HIV test. The doctor was actually trying to dissuade me from getting the HIV test. He kept telling me, "Well, you don't engage in any high-risk behaviors. Latino gay men are not really at that high risk."

But then he started backtracking and saying, "Actually, I guess that there are certain high-risk populations of Latinos in New York. So maybe you should get the test . . ." It was this interesting back-and-forth, where the doctor was almost using epidemiology to determine whether or not I should be getting an HIV test. So it was a very interesting experience, to say the least. I was very adamant about getting the HIV test so, in the end, he did give it to me.

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