New NASTAD HIV Testing Toolkit Provides Guidance to Increase Recruitment and Linkage Efforts for People Living with HIV

By Jillian Casey July 28, 2015

As a Capacity Building Assistance provider funded to support HIV Testing for health departments, NASTAD hosted a series of focus groups in late 2014 to learn more about the areas that needed to be strengthened within health department-funded testing programs. Citing rapid advancements in testing technology and the introduction of CDC’s new algorithm, participants requested a reference tool to provide an overview of fourth generation testing technology. Programs also requested assistance in selecting a testing strategy that matches program capacity and resources with the needs of the target population(s) and venue(s).

Furthermore, as fewer people are living with undiagnosed HIV infection, seropositivity requirements are growing increasingly difficult to meet. Health departments asked for tools to assess state/local progress and to better support the clinic and community based testing programs in their jurisdictions. To ensure the best use of limited funding, HIV testing programs need to continually assess whether they are reaching their targets and examine the factors that are facilitating or inhibiting success. In doing so, they can determine strategies to improve client recruitment, identification of new infections, and linkage to and retention in care.

In response to these needs, NASTAD developed the following resources:

These tools can be used to both identify testing strategies and evaluate effectiveness at the local- and state-level. Health departments, community based organizations, and clinical testing sites can all leverage these resources to advance the goals of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy by identifying more individuals living with HIV and linking them to care.

For questions, more information about HIV testing, or to request CBA, please contact Jillian Casey

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