SAN JOSE (KCBS) – Public health officials in Santa Clara County are marking National HIV Testing Day by offering free tests at two different South Bay locations on Monday.

Jim McPherson with the Santa Clara County Health Department said that tests will be available at the Crane Center in San Jose, the county’s primary HIV testing clinic, and at a mobile clinic in St. James Park.

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“A trained counselor will do a brief sexual history. They’ll offer you the different testing options,” said McPherson. “If you do the rapid test, that result will take about 20 minutes. While you’re waiting, the counselor will talk with you and answer any questions you might have.”

KCBS’ Melissa Culross Reports:

McPherson said that tests can be done anonymously.

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He adds that more than 3,000 people in Santa Clara County are living with HIV and the Centers for Disease Control estimates that many more may not even know they are infected.

“Knowledge is power and the only way you’ll know whether or not you have become infected is to take the test,” McPherson said. “HIV can be symptom-free for up to 10 years.”

June 27 was designated National HIV Testing Day back in 1995.

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