CDC Sets Up AIDS Testing Program at Drugstores

August 8, 2012

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

1. pharmacy (n.) [fahr-muh-see] – a place where medicines or drugs are sold
Example: He went to the pharmacy to buy a cough medicine.

2. routine (adj.) [roo-teen] – referring to something done regularly
Example: He easily learned his job because most of the tasks he needs to do are routine.

3. preliminary (adj.) [pri-lim-uh-ner-ee] – referring to something that happens before the main matter or action
Example: Before the interview, there will be a preliminary exam for the applicants.

4. confirm (v.) [kuhn-furm] – to prove or to show that something is true or correct
Example: The results of the medical test will confirm if the patient has a rare virus.

5. symptom (n.) [simp-tuhm] – a change in the body that could mean the presence of a disease
Example: Fever, sore throat and muscle pain are common symptoms of influenza.

Read the text below.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the US  has started a new AIDS testing program in drugstores.

The $1.2-million program of the government is set to run in pharmacies and in-store clinics in 24 cities and rural communities. The program allows customers in these stores to avail of AIDS tests for free.

The agency hopes the new program will become another routine service, just like blood pressure checks and flu shots.

The test is done by taking a swab sample from the mouth. After 20 minutes, a preliminary result will be released. Patients who have positive results will be referred to local health service centers for a blood test to confirm the result. They will also be advised and treated as needed.

At several Walgreens, the largest pharmacy chain in the US, the test is done as privately as possible. Customers can quietly submit test request cards to pharmacy staff and can take the test in special rooms.

Currently, an estimated 1.1 million Americans are infected with HIV, but about 20% of them do not know they have the disease. In some cases, symptoms appear only after a decade or more.

The CDC recommends that all Americans aged 13 to 64 undergo HIV testing at least once, even those who are not considered at high risk.

With the new program, the CDC aims to train pharmacy staff to give HIV tests, which can help in detecting the disease faster.  The agency will confirm in a year whether the program is useful for customers.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         Do you agree that additional check-up services should be available in pharmacies, and not just in hospitals or clinics? Why or why not?
·         What do you think will be the disadvantages of these additional services inside drugstores?

Discussion B

·         How important is it to have regular medical check-ups? Please explain your answer.
·         Why do you think some people do not want to undergo check-ups regularly?

August 8, 2012