We Speak Methadone (and buprenorphine)

A NAMA Recovery Forum for Medication Assisted Treatment patients, family and advocates. (Issues or Questions about registration and/or the forum? Email zac@tnmethadone.org OR sapphirematthews@gmail.com)
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 Post subject: Hep B/C HIV Testing
PostPosted: Fri Sep 25, 2015 8:24 am 
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Joined: Fri Apr 26, 2013 7:09 am
Posts: 186
When I went to my clinic for my usual monthly counselling session with my counsellor, he was looking at my records and saw that I did not have an up to date Hep B/C HIV screen.

I told him that I regularly get tests from my doctor, and that the last one was only done 3 months ago, and as I don't use anymore and am in a monogamous relationship, I saw little need to get retested so soon.

Well, apparently there is some incentive scheme to get all patients tested actually at the clinic, and he kept pestering me about it so I agreed to get it done.

It was such a weird 'blood' test. The nurse pricked the side of my finger with something like the spurs that diabetics use to check blood sugar levels, and then squeezed droplets of blood onto a square of card, but she had to get these 5 little circles on the card all filled with blood.

It was a bit of a performance, as because they are not allowed to prick the pad of the finger or thumb, it's pretty difficult getting that volume of blood out of the bony side bit of a finger!

I was in there for ages, she had to jab me about 7 times, and now my finger looks like a tiny vampire has been chewing at it!

So, the card goes off to some lab where they do the tests, and if anything abnormal comes up, you then have to get a proper IV blood test done.

It took such a long time and was such a faff, I couldn't understand why they just didn't draw IV blood in the first place!

Do they do anything like this at anyone else's clinic?

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Sapphire Matthews - MAR Patient Advocate
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