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Olly Alexander has an important message ahead of National HIV Testing Week

By Will Stroude

Year & Years

frontman and former Attitude cover star Olly Alexander has called on gay and bisexual men to get tested for HIV as part of National HIV Testing Week, which kicks off tomorrow (19 November).

Regular HIV testing is now needed more than ever, as research shows that one in seven men who have sex with men are unaware that they have the virus, and that potentially 50,000 gay and bisexual men are living with HIV in the UK.

“Gay and bisexual men are still one of the hardest-hit communities for HIV. Let’s look after ourselves and each other by getting tested regularly,” says Olly.

“Taking an HIV might test sound like something complicated or scary but it’s really not, says Olly. “I get tested regularly and these days testing is offered in lots of different settings.

“Charities like Terrence Higgins Trust go out into bars, high streets and football matches to test people for HIV. You can even test yourself, in the privacy of your own home. Whatever works best for you.”

Since Prince Harry got tested live on TV, the demand for self-testing kits has increased. However, more testing is needed as, last year 30% of diagnosed cases had late stage HIV.

An increased in regular testing can lead to catching the virus early,and more effective treatment can be given to reduce the risks of passing it on and it’s effect on your health.

The aim of National HIV Testing Week is to remove the stigma surrounding getting testing and promote regular testing as the norm.

Find out more about National HIV Testing Week  and how to get an HIV test at

Words by Olivia Traverso-Madden

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