So The Office of Minority Health Resource Center and the Office of Population Affairs (OPA) combined forces to help spread the truth about HIV
"We put the truth out there and I think this gave us the opportunity to do this again next year and make it more comprehensive by maybe bringing an HIV testing van," said Margaret Korto, member of the OMHRC HIV Capacity Building Team, "because after we did the session people saw how much it was needed."
National HIV Testing Day (NHTD) took place on June 27 to focus people's attention on the importance of testing and knowing their status.
To commemorate the day, OMHRC offered back-to-back presentations to OPA to debunk myths commonly associated with HIV and openly talk about the ways to contract and prevent contraction of the virus that leads to AIDS.
"I saw an opening to dialogue, to frankly discuss topics that are difficult to bring up in day-to-day conversation," said Kathleen Woodall, public health analyst for the Office of Family Planning under OPA. "I think continued education is the only way people will learn more."
The HIV Capacity Building Team also discussed the importance of supplying parents and their children with factual information that will incite meaningful and factual conversations.
"Parents need to learn to incorporate HIV prevention in their talks with their sons and daughters," Korto said. "We have to address the comfort level of all parents when it comes to sex, HIV and AIDS. Sex is still taboo even in the health care arena, but it's important that we get to the point where we talk about HIV and sex and their relation."