Print this page    •   Back to Web version of article

U.S. News
Louisiana: Mobile Unit Allows AIDS Testing Nonprofit to Reach Wider Population

April 29, 2013

On April 27, at the SafeAlex Health Fair, Central Louisiana AIDS Support Services (CLASS) debuted a mobile van unit, made possible by a $50,000 Community Impact Award grant from the Central Louisiana Community Foundation. The van arrived April 3 and has been certified for testing. Previously, CLASS was able to administer testing only at its Alexandria office on Jackson Street. With the van, CLASS hopes that their expanded testing area will allow more people to get tested.

CLASS administers the free tests, which eliminate the need to draw blood by using an oral swab, and delivers test results in 20 minutes. "We were already out in the community providing educational material," said Ann Lowery, director of CLASS. "Now we'll be able to say, 'You want to get tested? Just step inside the van.'" Recently, CLASS experienced budget cuts, which forced them to offer testing only to the immediate Alexandria/Pineville area, even though their area includes eight parishes.

The southern portion of the United States has been hit hard by HIV because of a lack of access to healthcare and insurance. Louisiana ranks poorly within this region; Central Louisiana ranks poorly within the state. According to Lowery, young people ages 13–24 are a fast-growing HIV-infected segment of Central Louisiana. For more information on CLASS, visit or call (318) 442–1010.

Back to other news for April 2013

Excerpted from:
The Town Talk (Alexandria, La.)
04.28.2013; Jeff Matthews

This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update. You can find this article online by typing this address into your Web browser:

General Disclaimer: is designed for educational purposes only and is not engaged in rendering medical advice or professional services. The information provided through should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or a disease. It is not a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, consult your health care provider.