March is National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

SAN CARLOS —Every year, March 20 is the official date for the National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. This year, the San Carlos Department of Health and Human Services will actively support the national campaign and promote HIV/AIDS awareness through local community health events that will be held on Wednesday, March 14, 2018, in Bylas, at the Incubator Plaza, from 9-11 a.m. and at San Carlos Wellness Center from 1-2:30 p.m. 

The agenda for the HIV/AIDS Awareness Day includes presenters from various health departments. To increase HIV/AIDS knowledge, data and education will be provided by Dorothea Stevens, SC PHN. Greg Gurrola and his co-workers from Native Health in Phoenix will present on Hepatitis C, HIV prevention pills (PreEP: pre-exposure prophylaxis) and PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis), HIV/AIDS services that they provide, and at both locations they will offer free rapid HIV and Hep. C testing (a 20-minute result) in their mobile unit.

Information on local HIV/AIDS services and resources will be presented by Melissa Lunt RN, Graham County Health Department, and Chuck Turney and Shaunae Casillas of Gila County Health Department.

To improve on personal behavioral risk reductions, the SCWC staff, Nina Bendle, Amanda Chapman and Kaylee Clark will provide interactive educational activities (prevention methods and positive relationship interventions) for the community participants. 

Isadore Boni, a community member, will share his personal HIV/AIDS journey and lead the “Walk to Honor those who Passed, are Infected and are Affected.” 

The local STI testing sites are located at San Carlos Health Care Corporation, 928-475-1440; Gila County Health Department, 928-402-8809; and Graham County Health Department, 928-792-5360.

For more information, contact San Carlos Health Education at 928.475.1530 or SCWC at 928-475-4654.

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