This day brings attention to the growing number of people living long and full lives with HIV and to their health and social needs. The Malheur County Health Department supports efforts to bring awareness to the issues related to HIV and aging in our country. Through National HIV/AIDS and Aging Awareness Day, our organization is committed to putting an end to HIV/AIDS related stigma, discrimination, and misinformation about prevention care and treatment for those over 50.
In 2018, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported persons aged 50 and older accounted for approximately:
17% of new HIV diagnoses
47% of persons with HIV
71% of all deaths of persons diagnosed HIV infection
Of those individuals who were diagnosed with HIV at age 50 or older, 40% were 50-54 years of age.
National HIV/AIDS and Aging Awareness Day, launched in 2008 by The AIDS Institute, is recognized by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of HIV/AIDS and Infectious Disease Policy, and www.hiv.gov. The campaign highlights the complex issues related to HIV prevention, care, and treatment for aging populations in the United States. The goal of the campaign is to emphasize the need for prevention, research, and data targeting the older population, medical understanding of the aging process and its impact on HIV/AIDS.
Everyone has an HIV status. People who know their HIV status can protect themselves and others. Testing is easy, but only 37% of adult Oregonians have ever been tested for HIV. About 1,200 Oregonians are infected with HIV and don’t know it. If these people get tested and start HIV treatment medications, we could prevent 150 new infections over 3 years.
Call our clinic in Ontario for comprehensive and confidential testing at 541-889-7279. Have OHP and need a ride? We can set that up for you.
Knowledgeof HIV status is the first step to accessing prevention or treatment services which enable individuals to live a long and healthy life regardless of their status. HIV testing is free, easy, fast, and confidential at the Malheur County Health Department. Call 541-889-7279 to schedule an appointment.
Everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 should get tested for HIV at least once as part of routine health care.
Those with certain ongoing risk factors—such as having more than one sex partner since their last HIV test or having sex with someone whose sexual history they don’t know—should get tested annually. Some sexually active gay and bisexual men may benefit from more frequent testing (e.g., every 3 to 6 months).
As part of proactive prenatal care, all pregnant women should receive certain blood tests to detect infections and other illnesses, such as HIV, syphilis, and Hepatitis B.
Imagine an Oregon where… We end new HIV infections. Everyone with HIV is healthy. Can you imagine it?
End HIV Oregon.
Testing is easy.
Everyone has an HIV status and all Oregonians need to know theirs. It’s as easy as ever to get tested for HIV. Confidential HIV testing is available throughout Oregon. There are rapid tests which give results within 20 minutes, including home HIV test kits that can be purchased in drug stores and pharmacies. If you live in Oregon and haven’t been tested for HIV in the past year, you may qualify for a free at-home rapid HIV test. You can also ask your doctor for a confidential HIV test as part of a routine medical visit. Most insurance plans cover the cost of HIV testing. Free, confidential testing is offered at the Malheur County Health Department. Call 541-889-7279 to schedule an appointment.
HIV testing is recommended for everyone at least once in their life. Six out of every 10 Oregonians have never been tested for HIV, and Oregon sees 210-230 new infections every year. In 2020 and 2021, new HIV cases nearly quadrupled in Eastern Oregon.
2019 was another record year for STIs (sexually transmitted infections). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) rates of reported STIs rose for the sixth straight year, and they continue to rise today. Young people continue to endure a big share of the STI burden. About half of the 20 million cases of STIs each year are in people ages 15-25.
Chlamydia is the STI most commonly reported to CDC—about 1.8 million cases in 2019, a 19% rate increase since 2015. Young women ages 15-24 account for nearly half of these cases. Yet, chlamydia and gonorrhea frequently have no symptoms. Without diagnosis and treatment, they can cause serious complications such as pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility. Given the potential health problems, CDC recommends annual testing for sexually active women under 25.
Yes Means Test, a campaign from the American Sexual Health Association, addresses the need for testing. The group aims to reduce the stigma around STI tests. YES Means YES has become a sexual empowerment movement. It’s about the right to make your own choices about sex—and have those choices respected. The Yes Means TEST campaign aligns with that movement, empowering people who say “yes” to sex with an understanding of the rights and responsibilities that choice carries. YES means TEST helps steer the conversation: “Yes” to sex, means “Yes” to getting tested.
Call the Malheur County Health Department to schedule your test. 541-889-7279.
Sexually Transmitted Infections are on the rise in Malheur County, so it’s more important than ever that you know the facts and get tested.
False assumptions about STIs – how they’re spread, prevented, and treated – are everywhere, and it can be especially hard for people to get the facts. Making sure that you have the correct information about STI prevention and testing has never been more important.
Did you know…?
STIs impact young people the hardest. In the U.S., almost half of all new infections in 2018 were among people aged 15-24.
If you are sexually active, you can lower your risk of getting an STI several ways, including by using a condom the right way from start to finish.
Almost all STIs that can be spread via condomless vaginal sex also can be spread through oral and anal sex without a condom.
You can’t tell if someone has an STI just by looking at them. Many STIs don’t cause any symptoms, so the only way to know for sure is to get tested.
Even if you use birth control, you should still think about STI prevention. Birth control methods like the pill, patch, ring, and IUD are very effective at preventing pregnancy, but they do not protect against STIs and HIV.
The most reliable way to avoid STIs is to not have vaginal, anal, or oral sex.
You also should know that all STIs, even HIV, are treatable, and most are curable. The sooner you get tested, the sooner you can take action to protect your health and the health of your partner(s).
Some STIs can lead to serious health problems if they’re not treated. For example, an untreated STI, like chlamydia, can make it difficult or impossible for a woman to get pregnant. An untreated STI can also increase the chances of transmitting or getting HIV.
STI tests are quick, simple, and usually painless. For example, rapid HIV tests can provide results from just a swab inside the mouth in only 20 minutes.
Not all medical checkups include STI testing. Unless you ask to be tested, you can’t assume you have been. Ask your healthcare provider which STIs you should be tested for.
Talk to your partner about when you were last tested and suggest getting tested together. If you have an STI, tell your partner. These conversations may seem hard to have, but open communication with your partner is essential to staying healthy and stopping the spread of STIs. These conversations may also bring you closer together. Here are some tips to help you start the conversationexternal icon.
Confidential, free or low-cost testing is available at the Malheur County Health Department. Call 541-889-7279 today to schedule an appointment.
Wednesday, Dec., 1, Project Dove and Origins Faith Community will partner with the Malheur County Health Department for a World AIDS Awareness Day event, including information, confidential testing for HIV, Hepatitis C and syphilis, as well as games, snacks and a screening of the film “How to Survive a Plague.”
Information about the event can be found at this link.
The Malheur County Health Department (MCHD) provides compassionate, high quality care for all people in Malheur County, including LGBTQIA+ individuals. We are proud to offer many services for the health and well-being of our community, including:
Rapid HIV testing, referral, and case coordination
Sexually Transmitted Infections testing and treatment
Communicable disease testing and case coordination, including tuberculosis and hepatitis
Wide range of birth control options
Immunizations, including HPV for all genders ages 9-26
Home Visiting programs for parents with children age 5 and under
Pregnancy testing and counseling
Tobacco prevention and education
Birth and death certificates, available within 6 months of event
WIC nutrition program for qualifying families with children age 5 and under
We are a community of all sexual orientations and
gender identities and have a variety of health needs. MCHD serves all people
regardless of ability to pay, with a few low-cost exceptions. No one will be
denied services based on immigration status, sex, gender identity, sexual
orientation, race, nationality, or religious affiliation. MCHD also accepts
Medicare, Medicaid, and most private health insurance. If you do not have
insurance, we have staff who can help you sign up for the Oregon Health Plan or
determine your eligibility for other assistance programs.
All services are confidential and open to all ages. Call 541-889-7279 to make an appointment. Walk ins welcome. Se habla Español.
Some LGBT youth are more likely than their heterosexual peers to experience negative health and life outcomes. It is important that at-risk LGBT youth have access to resources and support to deal with the questions and challenges they may face as they mature.
It Gets Better Project The It Gets Better Project reminds teenagers in the LGBT community that they are not alone and it will get better.
Q Card Project The Q Card is a simple and easy-to-use communication tool designed to empower LGBTQ youth to become actively engaged in their health, and to support the people who provide their care.
StopBullying.gov: Information for LGBT Youth Lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) youth and those perceived as LGBT are at an increased risk of being bullied. There are important and unique considerations for strategies to prevent and address bullying of LGBT youth.
Because some LGBT youth are more likely than their heterosexual peers to experience bullying or other aggression in school, it is important that educators, counselors, and school administrators have access to resources and support to create a safe, healthy learning environment for all students.
The Trevor Project: Education and Resources for Adults The Trevor Project’s “Trainings for Professionals” include in-person Ally and CARE trainings designed for adults who work with youth. These trainings help counselors, educators, administrators, school nurses, and social workers discuss LGBTQ-competent suicide prevention.
Resources for Parents, Guardians, and Family Members
Some LGBT youth are more likely than their heterosexual peers to experience negative health and life outcomes, so it is critical for the parents, guardians, and other family members of LGBT youth to have access to the resources they need to ensure their LGBT children are protected and supported.
Electronic Aggression Increased access to technology has benefits, but it also increases the risk of abuse. Learn more.
The Family Acceptance Project The Family Acceptance Project is a research, intervention, education, and policy initiative that works to prevent health and mental health risks for LGBT children and youth.
Helping Families to Support Their LGBT Children This resource guide was developed to help practitioners who work in a wide range of settings to understand the critical role of family acceptance and rejection in contributing to the health and well-being of adolescents who identify as LGBT.
StopBullying.gov: Information for Parents Parents play a key role in preventing and responding to bullying. If you know or suspect that your child is involved in bullying, here are several resources that may help.