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Posted on: November 13, 2019

World AIDS Day 2019: Communities Make the Difference

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SHELBY COUNTY, TN – December 1, 2019 marks the 31st Annual World AIDS Day. World AIDS Day serves to focus global attention on the devastating impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. In keeping with this year’s theme: “Communities Make the Difference,” the Shelby County Health Department (SCHD) is collaborating with a number of community partners to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS, including testing, prevention, treatment and remembering those who lost their lives to the illness.  

The SCHD Infectious Disease Section, Shelby County Schools, and other partnering organizations are hosting a World AIDS Day Program on Friday, November 22, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. at Trezevant High School Auditorium, 3350 N Trezevant St, Memphis, TN 38127. The event will include a proclamation from Shelby County Mayor, Lee Harris and the Light of Hope Awards Ceremony to recognize a business, individual, and an organization who have consistently exhibited a strong desire to assist and/or support HIV/AIDS care, education and prevention efforts in Shelby County.

The SCHD Ryan White Program will host its Annual World AIDS Day Lighting of Lanterns Ceremony at Beale Street Landing, Downtown Memphis, 251 Riverside Drive, 38103 on December 2, 2019 at 5:30 p.m. This ceremony honors those who have lost their lives to the illness and those who are affected by and/or living with HIV/AIDS. It is free and open to the public.

As of 2018, more than 6,600 individuals are currently living with HIV and/or AIDS in Shelby County. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as many 1 in 7 people who have the virus that causes AIDS do not know it. That is why testing is so important. The only way to know your HIV status is to get tested.

Free confidential HIV counseling and rapid testing is available at the following locations between 8:00 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. daily (preliminary results provided in one hour):

  • Packer Clinic 

    814 Jefferson Ave., Room 221 1000
    Memphis, TN 38105

  •  Cawthon Public Health 
    1000 Haynes Street
    Memphis, TN 38114

    For more information about HIV testing and the World AIDS Day activities, call the SCHD Infectious Disease Section at (901) 222-9428 during normal business hours Monday through Friday.

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