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SCOTUS rules for Trump on ballot issue; CA high school students earn Google Career Certificates in high-demand fields; NY faith leaders help people address ecological grief; and a group offers abortion travel benefits for Mississippi women.

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The SCOTUS rules no state can remove a federal candidate from an election ballot saying that power rests with Congress, Super Tuesday primaries are today in sixteen states and a Colorado Court rules in the killing of Elijah McClain in police custody.

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Hard times could be ahead for rural school districts that spent federal pandemic money on teacher salaries, a former Oregon lumber community drafts a climate-action plan and West Virginians may soon buy raw milk from squeaky-clean cows.

IN HIV/AIDS Center Urges Participation on National HIV Testing Day

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Tuesday, June 27, 2023   

Once viewed as an automatic death sentence with the first diagnosis in 1981, HIV today is met with effective treatment options. Today is National HIV Testing Day, which encourages people to get tested to determine if they are infected. Testing is free and confidential at multiple sites around the country.

Alan Witchey, president and CEO of The Damian Center, an Indiana AIDS service organization, said testing for the virus is simple.

"You can come in and get your status in minutes. It's a rapid test," he explained. "It's just a pin prick to your finger and you can get your status in minutes, so it's worthwhile going and finding out."

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in Indiana, 540 new cases of HIV were detected as of January 2022 - currently, there are 13,900 people living with HIV in the state.

The agency also says an estimated 1.2 million people in the United States had HIV at the end of 2021. Of those people, about 87% reported being aware they were HIV positive. Witchey admits the urgency and attention to the diagnosis and treatment of HIV and AIDS has faded over time due to medications that help infected people live long and healthy lives, but added it is a misnomer to believe the HIV and AIDS epidemic is over.

"The epidemic is still going on in central Indiana," he said. "We had 300 new cases last year. There are about 1,000 people in central Indiana that are living with HIV and don't know it."

Witchey added often people will get diagnosed later, and they may already feel ill or have side effects related to the disease - which is why it is so important to get an early diagnosis. A 2020 study by 'aidsvs.org' found that 76% of people who developed AIDS had a late HIV diagnosis, which is defined as having an AIDS diagnosis within three months of testing positive for the HIV virus.


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