Anonymous, free, non-needle-based HIV testing in NYC?
June 24, 2008 6:24 AM   Subscribe

In NYC: routine HIV testing that is anonymous (not "confidential"), uses saliva or a fingertip-prick (not a blood draw from the arm), and is free or very cheap -- those three things are musts -- that is in or close to the 5 boroughs? I don't need fast results; just looking for my usual periodic tests. This was easy and free in my former (smaller) city; am I just missing something in NYC?
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I'm not from NYC, but I would think there would be a Planned Parenthood clinic that would offer what you are looking for. The Planned Parenthood I used to work at used the Orasure HIV testing - just a wand put in the mouth; and they generally have sliding fee scales for services.
posted by at 6:39 AM on June 24, 2008

I'm not sure what you mean by anonymous vs. confidential, but in New York City, I'm pretty sure that you can walk in to any of the city health clinics and get a free rapid saliva HIV test. They won't ask you for your name, address or for any form of ID, but will issue you a random number.
posted by TBoneMcCool at 7:26 AM on June 24, 2008


Confidential means "you can trust us not to tell anyone anything about your test or results."

Anonymous means "Nobody, even the person taking your sample, will ever know your name; you will only be a number."
posted by Tomorrowful at 7:29 AM on June 24, 2008

Have you tried any of these clinics?
posted by gingerbeer at 7:50 AM on June 24, 2008

Agree with TBoneMcCool - you can get free anonymous testing at any DOH site that offers it. According to Gay Men's Health Crisis:
In New York State, anonymous testing is provided for free but only at Department of Health test sites. Anonymous testing allows a person to get tested for HIV without providing their name or personal information. For information on an anonymous test site near you, please call the Department of Health at 800.825.5448 or if you live in New York City, you can dial 311.
posted by bedhead at 7:51 AM on June 24, 2008

Also, the clinics listed by both commenters above were the first google result for "nyc anonymous hiv test". Go forth and get tested!
posted by bedhead at 7:53 AM on June 24, 2008

Interestingly, the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene yesterday issued a news bulletin notifying the public that, because of a higher than acceptable number of false positives using Orasure, the City was temporarily suspending saliva tests in the five boroughs. You can read the DOH bulletin here, and a related Yahoo news article here. You can still go to any one of the options that TBoneMcCool links to and get a rapid blood test.
posted by lassie at 7:58 AM on June 24, 2008

I think it'll have to be finger prick, NYC DOH suspended using saliva tests this week due to an increase in false positives. NYS has very tight laws around disclosure of HIV status already, perhaps that's part of what's causing your confusion between 'confidential' and 'anonymous'.
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 8:01 AM on June 24, 2008

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