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More Chicagoans Getting Screened For HIV

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Chicago health officials say there’s some reason to be hopeful on World AIDS Day today.

Chicago sees roughly 2,400 new AIDS and HIV cases a year. That’s a slight decline from previous years And, public health officials say more Chicagoans than ever are getting tested for the disease.

Chris Brown runs the Chicago Health Department’s AIDS and HIV programs.

BROWN: What I think is driving a lot of those increases in testing are kind of awareness levels by a lot of the community providers and Chicago has also received an increase in funding.

Under a new Illinois law, written consent is no longer required for HIV screening. Now, doctors must get verbal consent from patients. Brown says the change removes some of the hurdles to testing making it a normal part of medical care.

I’m Tasha Flournoy, Chicago Public Radio.

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