Information about different HIV testing technologies, including their accuracy in the context of recent infection. Antibody/antigen laboratory tests are extremely accurate, while point-of-care (rapid) tests, self-testing and self-sampling services are more convenient for many people.

Types of HIV tests: latest news

Types of HIV tests resources

  • Testing

    HIV testing in the UK is free, voluntary and confidential. You can be tested at an NHS sexual health clinic, a GP surgery or a...

    From: The basics

    Information level Level 1
  • HIV testing

    HIV tests are available in lots of healthcare settings. Home HIV testing is also available.Laboratory tests are the most accurate but rapid tests can be...

    From: Factsheets

    Information level Level 2
  • Home HIV testing

    Self-sampling and self-testing are new options for taking an HIV test.You don't need to see a doctor or nurse to use home testing kits.HIV tests...

    From: Factsheets

    Information level Level 2
  • HIV testing technologies

    This briefing paper, produced by NAM for HIV Prevention England, provides an overview of HIV diagnostic tests for people planning, commissioning or providing HIV prevention...

    From: HIV prevention briefing papers

  • Types of test

    A number of different testing techniques are available and will be used in different circumstances. As well as laboratory-based third and fourth generation tests, there...

    From: HIV transmission & testing

    Information level Level 4
  • Understanding test results

    Technical reports on the accuracy of different tests (described in a later section) analyse tests in terms of their ‘sensitivity’, ‘specificity’ and ability to detect...

    From: HIV transmission & testing

    Information level Level 4
  • What tests look for

    The most widely known tests detect HIV antibodies. However detection of p24 antigen is now an important part of HIV-testing strategies....

    From: HIV transmission & testing

    Information level Level 4

Types of HIV tests features

Types of HIV tests in your own words

  • Seroconversion

    I was given my diagnosis over the telephone after spending four days in hospital with meningitis. I now realise it wasn’t meningitis, it was an...

    From: In your own words

Types of HIV tests news from aidsmap

More news

Types of HIV tests news selected from other sources

  • Rwanda to allow pharmacies sell oral HIV self-testing kits

    Selected pharmacies in the Rwandan capital Kigali are in line to begin selling over-the- counter oral HIV self-testing kits, Rwanda’s New Times Daily has reported. The report added that the price of the kit had also been slashed by half as a result of a government-private sector partnership. It said over 20 pharmacies in Kigali were receiving training on how to administer the kits.

    01 June 2018 | Africanews
  • Early HIV diagnosis in infants works in Africa, but the technology must spread to save lives

    For infants born with HIV, a rapid introduction to necessary treatment is often the lifeline between whether a child will live or die. The recent introduction of a life-saving, point-of-care diagnostic technology in sub-Saharan Africa could become a global solution to preventing infant deaths from HIV.

    23 February 2018 | Devex
  • Multi-disease testing offers new ways to streamline disease management, Unitaid report says

    Innovators are responding to the world’s growing co-infection crisis by developing devices that can quickly, accurately diagnose multiple diseases at a time. Unitaid’s new landscape report, launched today, profiles more than 95 such devices, already on the market or in development, all of which address at least one of Unitaid’s key disease areas—HIV, hepatitis C (HCV), tuberculosis (TB) and malaria.

    02 February 2018 | Unitaid
  • A More Sensitive Saliva-Based HIV Test Is in the Works

    Preliminary experiments suggest that the investigatory saliva test can identify HIV earlier in the course of infection compared with currently available spit-based assays. However, this experimental test will not likely identify new HIV infections as early as a blood test can.

    25 January 2018 | Poz
  • Alere Detect Effective as Rapid HIV-2 Test

    The Alere q HIV-1/2 Detect test (Alere) can differentiate between HIV-1 and HIV-2 in 100% of samples, according to a new study. The test is the only point-of-care nucleic acid test (NAT) currently able to detect HIV-2.

    07 December 2017 | Infectious Disease Special Edition
  • CE Marking for world’s only integrated HIV Self-Test from Atomo Diagnostics

    Atomo HIV Self Test granted CE Mark; will facilitate rollout in European and other global markets. Test will be available commercially during 2018 via retail, e-commerce and public health channels.

    13 October 2017 | Atomo press release
  • MHRA seizes more than 100 unreliable HIV home-testing kits

    MHRA are investigating a number of Hightop HIV/AIDS Home Test Kits that may be unreliable and may provide false results.

    22 August 2017 | Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency
  • OraSure Technologies Receives World Health Organization Prequalification of OraQuick® HIV Self-Test

    OraSure Technologies, Inc., a leader in point of care diagnostic tests and specimen collection devices, today announced that its OraQuick® HIV Self-Test (HIVST) has been Prequalified by the World Health Organization (WHO).

    22 July 2017 | Orasure press release
  • South Africa: First HIV test approved for home use to hit shelves

    BioSURE HIV Self Test is described by its makers as “South Africa’s only CE-marked HIV self-test and the first HIV test approved for use at home without a medical professional”.

    12 May 2017 | The Citizen
  • Kenya launches self-test kits and PrEP

    The Government of Kenya has reinforced its commitment to end AIDS by 2030 by launching two innovative technologies: self-testing for HIV and PrEP.

    05 May 2017 | UNAIDS
More news

Our information levels explained

  • Short and simple introductions to key HIV topics, sometimes illustrated with pictures.
  • Expands on the previous level, but also written in easy-to-understand plain language.
  • More detailed information, likely to include medical and scientific language.
  • Detailed, comprehensive information, using medical and specialised language.
Community Consensus Statement on Access to HIV Treatment and its Use for Prevention

Together, we can make it happen

We can end HIV soon if people have equal access to HIV drugs as treatment and as PrEP, and have free choice over whether to take them.

Launched today, the Community Consensus Statement is a basic set of principles aimed at making sure that happens.

The Community Consensus Statement is a joint initiative of AVAC, EATG, MSMGF, GNP+, HIV i-Base, the International HIV/AIDS Alliance, ITPC and NAM/aidsmap
close

This content was checked for accuracy at the time it was written. It may have been superseded by more recent developments. NAM recommends checking whether this is the most current information when making decisions that may affect your health.

NAM’s information is intended to support, rather than replace, consultation with a healthcare professional. Talk to your doctor or another member of your healthcare team for advice tailored to your situation.