It’s 2024, and the cost of things is going up and up and up. Rather than dipping into your coin jar, why not save some dollars and get a free test for HIV and STIs?
For ease, we’ve recapped all the ways you can get a free HIV test below!
What are the free testing HIV and STI testing options?
In NSW, there are heaps of ways you can get tested for free!
Public sexual health clinics
Public sexual health clinics are free for everyone, regardless of Medicare, and with clinics across the state, you should usually be able to find one in your area.
Many clinics may only operate on certain days or provide targeted services for communities on certain days, so it always pays to call ahead and organise an appointment before heading out the door.
First Nations folk can also get a sexual health screen for free at Aboriginal Health Services (AHS) for free across the state. You can find both public sexual health clinics and AHS here.
a[TEST] is free for everyone, with or without Medicare! This service offers lightning-fast rapid HIV and STI testing service, with both our peer educators and nursing staff ready to deliver a testing service that will have you in and out in about 30 minutes. You can find a[TEST] in two locations across Sydney, on Oxford St (Darlinghurst) and Surry Hills. Book a test here.
Doctors or General Practitioners (GP)
GPs are available across the state, and you can often get a sexual health screen for free, so long as you have access to Medicare and the GP offers a bulk-billing service.
If private billing is in place, there may be a gap payment to cover the cost of your consultation and any follow-up appointments – sometimes, these are required to receive your results or get treatment prescribed. Nonetheless, it’s a good idea to call ahead to confirm what to expect.
Those without Medicare will also have to pay for the cost of the pathology, and while some might use private health insurance to claim back some of the cost for the visit and pathology, others may choose to visit a public sexual clinic instead.
Order a free HIV self-testing kit for your home
HIV self-testing kits are not only discreet and easy to use, but you can also get them for free by heading to hivtest.au. If privacy is a particular concern, these tests are great as they can be ordered to an address of your choosing, and you can conduct them at a time and place that you decide. We hope some of these testing options appeal to you!
What else is free?
One of the best ‘frees’ we haven’t mentioned is the sense of free-dom you get once you know your status! When you test, it lifts the veil of uncertainty and puts you in the driver’s seat of your own sexual health, allowing you to take charge – and that is something priceless.