Basseterre, 11 February, 2020 (SKNIS)– Officials from the National AIDS Secretariat in St. Kitts and Nevis are inviting persons to know their HIV status by attending the Operation Safe Streets, Safe Sheets at the Independence Square on Friday February 12 where there will be free Rapid HIV testing in order that participants will earn their lover’s license just in time for Valentine’s Day, which is celebrated globally on February 14 each year.
Health Educator/Counsellor, Mrs Lucine Pemberton-Vaughan said “on this busy highway called love, accidents can and will happen, especially around this period where everyone is expressing love and so the National Aids Secretariat is committed to reducing and illuminating such accidents through Operation Safe Streets, Safe Sheets.”
“It is a drive giving as many people the opportunity to know one’s status. If you know your status, you could not only protect yourself, you can protect the other person so when we rid our streets of STIs, specifically HIV, we are ensuring that our sheets are safe,” she said while appearing on the Working for You programme on February 10, 2021.
Operation Safe Streets, Safe Sheets is broken down into four parts with the first step centered around education.
At this step, Mrs Pemberton Vaughan said that “counsellors are going to do a very good job, they will answer all your questions, clear up any myths, any understandings and put you at ease.”
The second step is the examination process that is referred to as FERC. FERC she says is the acronym for “Free, Easy, Reliable, and Confidential”.
Demonstration is the third stage where the safety officers will explain and demonstrate the process of using certain tools such as male and female condoms, and lubricants.
“The the final step is the certification where you go by your secretary and she stamps your rider’s license (lover’s license) and that is the official seal of the Ministry of Health,” says Mrs. Pemberton-Vaughan.