Confidential HIV/AIDS testing is available at the Health and Wellness Center. Test results are received in approximately two weeks. To receive the results, you must return in person to the Center.
As required by state law, students receive counseling to help understand the results, to examine behaviors that necessitated the test, and to create risk reduction plans for the future. This is usually a 30-minute appointment prior to the testing and a 15-minute follow-up.
Tests for the Diagnosis of HIV
The Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) was developed for the purpose of screening blood for the blood bank system. For individuals requesting an HIV antibody blood test, one specimen of blood is drawn that is used for an ELISA. A second test, the Western Blot test, which is considered more accurate, but is also more expensive, is used to confirm a positive ELISA.
The OraSure HIV-1 collection device is the only FDA approved sample collection device available that uses oral fluid to test for antibodies for the HIV-1 virus. A small device resembling a toothbrush is placed between the patient's lower cheek and gums for 2 minutes to collect cheek cells. The cells then are analyzed for the antibodies. The test screens cheek cells, not saliva.
Locations for Testing
You can schedule an appointment with the Health and Wellness Center. Or, you can schedule an appointment with the Erie County Department of Health (814-451-6700 or 800-352-0026, ext. 6700). They are located at 606 W. 2nd Street, Erie, PA.
For more information about HIV/AIDS, refer to the following resources:
- Mayo Clinic (comprehensive site for symptoms, causes, risk factors, tests, treatment, etc.)