The Northern Health Region (NHR) is sounding the alarm over more people in and around Flin Flon testing positive for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
In a statement issued by the NHR April 17, the region called for people to be tested for the virus.
“Northern Health Region public health has seen an increase in HIV in Flin Flon and surrounding areas. Public health is urging the public to be tested for HIV,” reads the statement.
Testing for HIV in Flin Flon is conducted at the Flin Flon Primary Health Care Centre at 1 North Avenue uptown. Anyone requiring a test - which is free - can get one from going to the centre and speaking to a public health worker. More information on testing can be found by calling the centre at (204) 687-1350.
Over 1,400 Manitobans have HIV or AIDS, according to the Nine Circle Community Health Centre. The province has the second-highest proportion of all Canadian provinces of people testing positive for HIV/AIDS each year, behind only Saskatchewan. In 2021, 27 people in the NHR tested positive for HIV, the second most of Manitoba’s five health regions.
HIV has no medically available cure, but can be treated and monitored. If not treated, HIV can lead to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Anyone can get HIV - getting the virus does not guarantee that a person will get AIDS or that the person will suffer grave health impacts.
HIV is mainly transmitted through bodily fluid contact with someone who has the virus. That can include sharing syringes, razors, toothbrushes, tattoo or piercing equipment with someone who has the virus, through unprotected sex with someone who has the virus or through activities like breastfeeding. The virus does not spread through normal bodily contact, coughing or sneezing or through insect or mosquito bites.