Instant self-test HIV kit on sale in the UK

2015-04-27 14:55

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

London - Britain's first legally-approved HIV self-testing kit went on sale online on Monday, promising a result in just 15 minutes with a 99.7% accuracy rate.

Developers hope the BioSure HIV Self Test will help identify the estimated 26 000 people in Britain who have HIV but do not yet know.

"Knowing your HIV status is critical and the launch of this product will empower people to discreetly test themselves when it is convenient to them and in a place where they feel comfortable," explained BioSure founder Brigette Bard.

Early diagnosis reduces the risk of passing the disease on to other people and also raises the success rate of modern treatments, which now make the disease manageable.

"Over 40% of people living with HIV are diagnosed late, meaning they have been living with HIV for at least four years," said Deborah Gold, chief executive of the National Aids Trust (NAT).

"People diagnosed late are 11 times more likely to die in the first year after diagnosis," she added.

The kit reacts to antibodies, proteins made in response to the virus in a drop of the person's blood, producing two purple lines in the event of a positive diagnosis.

The self-test, which is only available via the Internet, can only detect antibodies three months after the patient has become infected, and is not effective during this initial period, and all positive results must be confirmed by professional health workers, experts said.

Quick access

Rosemary Gillespie, chief executive at HIV charity Terrence Higgins Trust, said it was "great to see the first self-test kits being approved.

"However, it is important to make sure people can get quick access to support when they get their result."

Currently, those who fear they may have been infected have to collect a blood sample at home and send it to a laboratory, waiting five days for the result.

There are almost 110 000 people in Britain living with HIV, which can lead to AIDS if the sufferer's immune system becomes badly damaged.

A similar test in the US has been available since 2012, giving a result in around 30 minutes from a sample of the person's saliva or blood.

Read more on:    hiv aids  |  health

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
3 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.