Call us : 336.725.5614     Visit us at: 201 West 5th St., Winston-Salem, NC 27101 – Mon – Thurs, 9 am – 5 pm, Fri 9 am – noon

What is POSSE?

POSSE (Prevent Ongoing Spread of STIs Everywhere) is a program of the HIV & STI (Sexually Transmitted Infection) Outreach Section at the Forsyth County Department of Public Health that works in Partnership with the Winston-Salem Urban League. The POSSE Team provides HIV and STI screenings and education in community locations in Forsyth County such as churches, jails, universities, homeless shelters, nightclubs, and community health fairs.The POSSE Team performs non-clinical, HIV/STI screenings and education in our downtown office (201 W 5th) on Tuesdays from 1:00-2:00. Walk-ins welcome.

Quick Facts

•In 2009 Forsyth County had the highest number of Syphilis cases in North Carolina

•All young people under 26 years old should be tested for Gonorrhea & Chlamydia at least once a year

•Many STIs do not cause visible symptoms – the only way to know you have an STI is to get tested

•1 in 5 HIV positive individuals do not know they have HIV

Testing and Recommendations

HIV, Syphilis and Hepatitis C Screening (blood test)

•One simple blood draw will collect a sample which can be tested for HIV, Syphilis, and Hepatitis C. POSSE staff members are skilled in phlebotomy to collect the specimen quickly and with little discomfort to the individual being tested.

•For HIV, the CDC recommends everyone from 13 – 64 years old get tested at least once in their lifetime. If you are sexually active, you should get tested at least once a year or more often depending on your sexual risk factors.

•For Hepatitis C, the CDC recommends everyone who was born between 1945 and 1965 get tested for Hepatitis C. Click here for more information. Other individuals may also benefit from a Hepatitis C test, so please talk to a POSSE staff member if you are interested in being tested for Hepatitis C.

HIV Rapid Test (mouth swab)

•A painless way to test for HIV using a mouth swab. This test is not always used for regular testing, but POSSE staff may choose to use it either in place of or in addition to the standard blood test for HIV.

Gonorrhea & Chlamydia Screening

Women:

◦If you are sexually active, you should get tested at least once a year or more often depending on your sexual risk factors.

◦A simple, painless vaginal swab will be used by the individual to collect an appropriate specimen for testing.

◦As needed, rectal and/or pharyngeal swabs will be used by the individual to collect an appropriate specimen for testing. These types of testing are also easy and painless.

Men:

•If you are sexually active, you should get tested at least once a year or more often depending on your sexual risk factors.

•One small urine sample will be collected by the individual. If you know you want to have this test done, please do not go to the bathroom before you come for testing because you will be asked to provide a urine sample.

•As needed, rectal and/or pharyngeal swabs will be used by the individual to collect an appropriate specimen for testing. These types of testing are also easy and painless.

Results

Results for all tests are available approximately 3 weeks after your testing date. You can call 336-703-3212 or 336-703-3213 to receive your test results on Mondays and Wednesdays from 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm. You can also receive a paper copy of your results by coming to the Health Department during regular business hours. You will be required to show a photo ID to receive results in person.

Other HIV/STI Services Available at the Forsyth County Department of Public Health

•The Sexually Transmitted Disease Clinic provides confidential examinations, diagnostic testing, and treatment of STDs (syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and others). HIV counseling and testing is also offered to clients who are seen in the STD Clinic. Follow this link for more information.

•The Family Planning clinic offers women and men comprehensive family planning and preventive health services. Services are confidential and available for anyone of child-bearing age, including adolescents. Follow these links for more information:

Adult clinic

Teen clinic

Education

For more information about the following topics, click on the appropriate link.

HIV/AIDS info

•Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)

Syphilis

Gonorrhea 

Chlamydia

Trichomoniasis 

Herpes

HPV/Genital Warts

Hepatitis

Tips to Prevent STIs

Condoms

Forsyth County HIV/STI Statistics

North Carolina HIV/STI Statistics

Contacts

Lakecia Owens
HIV/STI Prevention Supervisor
owensld@forsyth.cc
ph: 336-703-3181

Ryan Crossgrove
Straight Talk Coordinator
crossgrc@forsyth.cc
ph: 336-703-3212