There has been a great deal of discussion as of late as to the best HIV test option for performers. For years, our industry has utilized PCR DNA as the off label (non FDA approved for detection or diagnostic) standard HIV test for performers. Although not sanctioned by the FDA, the medical professionals at Aim chose this test because it was the best test to determine the presence of HIV— especially for acute (recently contracted) infections.
There continues to be great progress in the research, testing, detection and diagnosis of HIV. For some HIV tests the window of time between the point of contracting HIV and viral detection has decreased to as little as 9-11 days. And, tests have become increasingly sensitive, thus increasing the accuracy of test results.
After considerable research and contact with infectious disease specialists, pathologists and physicians, we at APHSS (Adult Performer Health and Safety Services) have identified two tests that best meet the needs of our performer population. They are the Aptima HIV-1 RNA Qualitative Assay and the Abbot RealTime HIV 1 Assay. Both tests have the 9 to 11 day window mentioned above. While the Aptima test is sanctioned by the FDA for detection and diagnosis, the off-label use of the Abbot test has also been identified by experts as an excellent option for the industry because of the doctor’s ability to know the value of the viral load.
Beginning May 15th all APHSS testing sites will utilize either the Abbot or Aptima PCR RNA tests. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or would like additional information.