Health Services

HIV & STI Testing

Rapid HIV Testing

Walk-Ins Welcome

Monday – Friday:
10:00AM – 8:30PM

Saturday:
10:00AM – 3:30PM

STI Screening

Call (562) 434-4455 to make your appointment.

 Tuesday & Thursday
12:00PM-7:00PM

The Basics of HIV & STI Testing 

The Center is dedicated to serving the LGBTQ community to increase awareness around HIV & STI testing and reduce stigma around sexual health. Our Health Services team can help you better understand sexual health issues that disproportionately impact our community, by providing affirming and LGBTQ specific education, counseling and additional resources.

We pride ourselves on our fast, easy, and client-centered services. The HIV tests we use are FREE,  highly accurate, and completely confidential, with results that come back in as little as 20 minutes. For complete HIV testing services, we ask for you to allow 40 minutes of your time. Whether your reason for getting tested is routine or urgent, we are here to help you consider your health first. Do you know your status? If not, come in and find out. No appointment necessary.

There are now more resources than ever before to help the LGBTQ community maintain their sexual health, specially those disproportionately impacted by HIV & STIs. Screening areas like the throat and rectum for gonorrhea and chlamydia have detected more cases than before. Included one-on-one counseling provide easy ways to tell your partners to get checked. The Center also makes access to free vaccination through collaborations events around meningitis and hepatitis B.

Nearly 8 out of 10 people living with HIV in LA County are gay and bisexual men.  Bacterial STIs, like Chlamydia and Gonorrhea which are curable, are particularly common among gay and bisexual men. Syphilis has increased more than 365% since 2001 making it important to stay on top of the latest sexual health information. Make sure you are getting regular testing and treatment, if necessary.

STI Screening

To make an appointment: (562) 434-4455
The Health Services team provides free screening on site. STI related exams as well as screenings for syphilis, gonorrhea, and chlamydia are available along with rapid HIV test. We strive to make all of our services accessible and free of charge, STI testing is free for those who do not have insurance or do not feel comfortable going to their own medical provider. Donations are always welcome.

Having sex with more than one person and if that person is having sex with other people increases your chances of coming into contact with an STI. We recommend getting regular check-ups for HIV and STIs – the CDC recommends getting tested every 4 or 6 months. If you think you have HIV or an STI or find out you had sex with someone who does, get tested and treated right away.

If you find out that you have HIV or an STD, let those individuals know as soon as you can. That way, they can get treated as well, and it helps stop the spread of that STD in our community. STIs have a tendency to spread quickly in small cities, social circles and networks having the potential of coming back full circle.

STDs and HIV-Positive Men

For people living with HIV, STDs can take longer to treat and can be more likely to lead to serious complications. Complications from STDs can also be more severe, and progress more rapidly in people living with HIV. Visit your primary care provider on a regular basis, and ask about routine testing for STDs (including Syphilis) every three months, or else with your periodic exam and blood work. Also, if you get an STD, it’s important to get treated quickly. If you get Syphilis, you will not only need to get treated right away, but you will need to have a follow-up test to ensure you have been cured of your infection.

Know the HIV-STD connection.

If you’re HIV-negative and have an STD like Syphilis or Gonorrhea, you are two to five times more likely to become HIV infected if you have unprotected sex with an HIV-positive partner. People who are HIV-positive and have an STD are more likely to transmit HIV to their partner.

If you have more than one partner, get HIV/STD check-ups every 4-6 months. HIV and STDs often cause no symptoms at first, but can cause serious problems later. There are some LGBTQ affirming clinics in the L.A. and Long Beach areas where you can get free or low-cost testing.

Additional STI Screening Resources

The Center’s STI screening program provides quality LGBTQ sexual health services to those who do not have access screening and treatment services anywhere else. Our staff works to address the specific needs of the LGBTQ community. Due to the high volume of clients making appointments to receive our tailored services, appointments may be made for up to a week from the time of scheduling. If you are unable to wait, please reach out to the following organizations that also provide free or low cost STI screening:

Long Beach Department of Health
2525 Grand Ave., Long Beach, CA
562-570-4315
Mon- Fri: 7 am-5 pm

Planned Parenthood- Long Beach Health Center
2690 Pacific Ave. #370, Long Beach, CA 90806
800-576-5544
Mon-Sat: 8 am-4 pm

Unified Care Medical Group
2040 Pacific Coast Highway Suite S, Lomita, CA 90717
424-347-8008
Mon-Thu: 9 am-8 pm
Fri: 9am-5pm
Sat 9am-3pm

Need more than just STI screening services? Click here to search for a clinic near you that could help with more services.

Preventative Care- PEP & PrEP

Have questions about HIV risks and transmission related issues? The Health Services Team is here to inform and help facilitate the idea of “Safer Sex Practices”. Together you and your counselor can take steps and set goals towards lowering your risk for HIV and STD’s.

PEP and PrEP have both been a popular topic of discussion when it comes to preventative action against HIV. PEP (Post-Exposure Prophylaxis) is a treatment used if someone was recently exposed to the HIV virus. By receiving this treatment within 72 hours of exposure, and continuing to administer it for 28 days, PEP can prevent the virus from establishing infection in the body. PEP is effective, but not 100%. PrEP(Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) is a daily medication used to prevent the contraction of HIV. PrEP is recommended to individuals who have a higher rate of exposure to HIV. For questions regarding these medications, contact us at:  (562) 434-4455 / healthed@centerlb.org 

FAQs

Frequently asked questions about sexual health and STI screening

How long does it take to get STI screening results?

The Health Services team will only call those with reactive test result 7-10 business days from the day of your sample collection. If you do not hear from our team after two weeks (or 10 business days) but are still interested in hearing about your results, please feel free to call us at (562) 434-4455  ext. 236 Tuesday-Saturday and we can go over your results over the phone.

Do you want a copy?

If you want a physical copy of your results, all you need to do is come by with your government issued photo ID and anyone from the Health Services team will be able to get you a copy. We can also spend some one-on-one time going over the results and talk about way to stay healthy.

Back to Index

Is treatment for STIs free too?

This program is made possible by funding to our HIV testing program which allows for the cost of treatment for MOST of those who have a reactive STI screening. At the moment The Center is able to purchase the needed treatment for the clients we are able to test, however, with prices for antibiotics changing every few months it can become difficult to meet the growing demand. We always encourage those with the means to donate to give towards the cost of their treatment of screening to help extend the services to include everyone. Please ask your STI screening counselor on how you can help keep this program going past what it’s funded for.

Back to Index

Are there appointments other than Tuesday and Thursday?

Unfortunately, the program is only able to offer free STI screening and treatment two days out of the week and at this point, Tuesdays and Thursdays seem to be the best for everyone. Appointments are available starting at 12:00pm and the latest appointment is at 7:00pm, with treatment available only on those days for clients tested through our program. You can also book an appointment to meet with a benefits specialist on Tuesdays and Thursdays if you’re interested in getting access medical insurance through Covered California.

We are looking at extending STI screening hours during the week and expanding services to include Saturday screening appointment in the near future.

Back to Index

Is STI Testing Free?

STI Screening that looks for gonorrhea, chlamydia and syphilis are available for NO COST to anyone who needs them. There is, however, a cost that The Center’s HIV & STI testing program pays to run those tests. This service is made available through limited funding geared to support those without insurance, the means to pay their co-pay visits or do not feel comfortable talking about LGBTQ sexual health issues with their doctor. We always encourage those who have the means to use their insurance to do so and leave appointment slots available to those who need them.

Back to Index

Change this in Theme Options
Change this in Theme Options