HIV Counseling and Testing, Prevention of HIV
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HIV testing and counseling (HTC) is the process that individuals and couples undergo to learn if they are infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). A blood, saliva, or urine sample is taken from the person and tested for HIV antibodies or antigens, depending on the type of test being used. Counseling is an interactive and personalized dialog between the person or couple seeking the test and the provider. Certain kinds of HTC, such as voluntary counseling and testing (VCT), provide counseling before and after an HIV test. Other models of HTC, such as provider-initiated testing and counseling (PITC), offer pretest information and posttest counseling based on the test result and are integrated with routine clinical services. In addition to the diagnostic value of HIV testing, learning one’s HIV status through HIV testing and counseling has been shown to motivate behavior change among people who test negative for HIV to prevent acquisition of the virus and among...
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