Get Yourself Tested

How to Make an Appointment

Cost - Registered: $15.00

The cost of a visit to sexual health clinic does not include the cost for any clinical support services (such as Lab, and Pharmacy) needed at the time of visit.

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Why Get Yourself Tested?

There should be no shame in taking care of your health!

Getting yourself tested can be nerve-racking, but it is always better to know your STI/HIV status so that you can keep yourself -- and your sexual partner(s) -- healthy.

Getting yourself tested is a normal part of being a sexually active person.

Getting yourself tested puts you in control.

Do You Need to Get Yourself Tested?

If you are sexually active, then yes! Half of all sexually active people will get an STI by the age of 25, and most won't know it because they won't always have symptoms. So, a person might feel perfectly healthy but still have an infection.

No matter which type(s) of sex you've had -- whether oral, vaginal or anal -- you generally need to get yourself tested at least once every year. If barriers (i.e., condoms, dental dams, and/or capes) are not used every time you have sex, or if you have multiple partners, then you might benefit from getting yourself testedmore frequently.

Everyone's specific STI/HIV testing needs are different, so talk to your healthcare provider about which tests are most appropriate for you!

What Tests Do You Need to Get?

Explore the current STI/HIV testing recommendations according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

In general, every sexually active person needs to get themselves tested at least once per year for: chlamydia, gonorrhea, and HIV. There are other sexually transmitted infections -- such as syphilis, herpes, hepatitis and HPV -- so talk to your healthcare provider about which tests might be best for you. You can also check out CDC's Get Tested tool that makes testing recommendations for you based on your responses.

For tailored care, talk to your healthcare provider about the type(s) of sex you have had (oral, vaginal, and/or anal) and -- if applicable -- whether you were a receptive partner (bottom), insertive partner (top) or both (vers). Throat and/or anal swabs might need to be collected for more thorough testing. If you use it, test it!

What's Involved in Getting Yourself Tested?

Your test may include:

  • Physical exam – Your health care provider may examine you for any signs of an infection, such as a rash, discharge, sores or warts. For people with a vulva, this exam can be similar to a pelvic exam.
  • Urine sample – You may be asked to pee into a cup. Urine samples can be used to test for chlamydia and gonorrhea.
  • Discharge, tissue, cell or oral fluid sample – Your provider will use a swab to collect samples that will be looked at under a microscope. These samples can test for certain STIs. For example, if you have sores, a swab might be used to test for herpes. Also, if you have received anal sex (bottomed), you might need to get an anal swab to check for chlamydia and gonorrhea.
  • Blood sample – Your provider may take a blood sample, either with a needle or by pricking the skin to draw drops of blood. These can be used, for example, to test for syphilis or HIV.

Make sure you know what you’re being tested for!

For tailored care, talk to your healthcare provider about the type(s) of sex you have had (oral, vaginal, and/or anal) and -- if applicable -- whether you were a receptive partner (bottom), insertive partner (top) or both (vers). Throat and/or anal swabs might need to be collected for more thorough testing. If you use it, test it!

Where Can You Get Yourself Tested?

On Campus:

  • Schedule an STI/HIV testing appointment at Student Health & Counseling Services (SHCS) through Health-e-Messaging. SHCS services are available to all registered UC Davis students, regardless of insurance provider. Visit SHCS' STI/HIV Testing page for more information.
  • The LGBTQIA+ Resource Center hosts anonymous HIV testing in partnership with SHCS and Harm Reduction Services on the first Wednesday of each month during the academic year while classes are in session. First come, first serve! Please note that the monthly testing date in January will be January 9th, NOT January 2nd.

In and around Davis:

  • Check out the UC Davis Sexcess Map for nearby STI/HIV testing locations and other sexual health resources -- such as safer sex products, menstrual supplies and emergency contraception.

Nationally:

  • Use the Get Tested tool from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to type in your ZIP code and find resources.

(some content on this page has been adapted from gytnow.org)

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Wouldn't I know if I had an STI (including HIV)?
  • Not necessarily.

    The most common symptom of an STI -- including HIV -- is no symptom. The only way to know if you have an infection is to get yourself tested.

  • Wouldn't I know if a sexual partner had an STI (including HIV)?
  • Not necessarily. You can't tell if someone has an STI/HIV just by looking at them -- or even by being sexually active with them!

    Remember: the most common symptom of an STI -- including HIV -- is no symptom. The only way for someone to know they have an infection is to get themselves tested.

  • Will my parent(s)/guardian(s) know if I get myself tested?
  • UC Davis SHCS is committed to protecting medical, mental health and personal information about you. Please see the following pages on our website:

    Notice of Privacy Practices

    Confidentiality and Release of Health Information

    If you are covered under another person's health plan in California and are concerned about confidentiality, then you can check out My Health, My Info for assistance with submitting a Confidential Communication Request to your insurance provider.

Resources

American Social Health Association
ashastd.org

California AIDS, STI and Hepatitis Hotline
1-800-367-AIDS (2437)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) STI Fact Sheets
cdc.gov/std

CDC Information Line
1-800-CDC-INFO (232-4636)

Family PACT
familypact.org

Go Ask Alice!
goaskalice.columbia.edu

HIV.gov

It's Your Sex Life
itsyoursexlife.com

Strike Out HIV Stigma
shcs.ucdavis.edu/strikeouthivstigma

The Body
thebody.com

UC Davis Sexcess Map
bit.ly/UCDSexcessMap

To find more testing sites near you, go to:
gettested.cdc.gov

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