Along with the rising number of HIV cases in recent times, the need for HIV testing has risen manifolds. A number of steps were taken in this regard. For example; setting up of free HIV testing centers in many places. This was an important step in this direction. However a lot was still needed as most people are scared to go to a clinic for HIV tests. This further worsened the condition.
In order to address this problem, the HIV home test came into light. An HIV home test kit enables you to know the results on the spot. Although it may appear to be easier to go for a home testing Kit, yet it is not a very accurate testing system. This means that you will anyway have to go for an HIV test at the clinic to get a confirming report.
In many countries, it is illegal to sell HIV testing kits to the public, although there is some debate on whether they should be allowed to be sold in the market. However if you wish to go for an HIV home test kit, it is better to go for a kit which has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration Department. It has to be mentioned here that like all anti body tests, these tests too need a period of at least six months for confirmation.
However, these kits have their share of advantages as well. As of it, these kits are easily available at local stores, or can be ordered on phone and through internet as well. Due to this reason, it is quite effective in case of people who do not have easy access to HIV testing centers. Apart from this the FDA approved HIV home kits are considered to give one of the most accurate results.
Despite this one can not ignore the fact that, there are many unapproved kits in the market as well. Due to this reason, the results can not said to be reliable. Not just that, it does not actually solve the purpose of anonymity, simply because, you will any way have to go to the store to buy the kit. This would reveal your identity. Also, if you choose to order it by phone, or through internet, then in that case, your identity is revealed as well. Apart from this there is no scope for counseling, which is available in case of an HIV testing center. Counseling is really important to help an infected person to deal with the after effects.
Along with the above demerits, it also has an additional disadvantage, that there is absolutely no scope for partner notification. An infected person may not share the information regarding his infection with his/her partner, exposing his/her to the risk of getting infected as well.
HIV home test kits have their share of advantages and disadvantages; and it is up to you to decide, which way to go.