One in four gay men in Bangkok is HIV positive. Learn more about where you can get tested, what to expect and sign up for automatic reminders.
Getting tested is quick and easy. By choosing one of the gay-friendly clinics below, your test is totally confidential and, in most cases, free-of-charge. Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP), a short-term antiretroviral treatment to reduce the likelihood of HIV infection after potential exposure, and PrEP may also be available.
Getting tested is a confidential and hassle-free process if you follow the steps below.
1. Register and Receive Pre-test Counseling
- Receive and complete a queue card from the receptionist
- When it’s your turn, a nurse will call you by queue card number and explain the process and meaning of the test results
For Thai nationals, depending on the testing clinic you visit, there are four ways to cover the cost of your HIV test:
- You can get free HIV tests at some community clinics WITHOUT showing your Thai National Identification Card
- You can get free HIV tests twice a year by showing your National Identification Card at clinics/hospitals that participate in the National Health Security Office or Social Security Scheme
- You can pay small fee of 20-200THB at local government clinics
- You can pay fee of 500-1000THB at private hospitals/clinics
*For non-Thais, you should check with each clinic about any fees or charges that may be involved.
2. Drawing and Testing Blood
The nurse draws a small amount of blood from your inner forearm, and labels the sample with a unique number, not your name. The result is available in 30-45 minutes.
3. Post-test Counseling and Receiving the Results
The nurse calls you back into the private counseling room and shares your results. There are two possible test outcomes:
- Positive (Reactive)
- Negative (Non-reactive)
The standard HIV testing procedure requires using two to three test kits with different methods to test the same blood. According to protocol, if the first test delivers a reactive result, the same blood is tested again a second and third time. The 'POSITIVE' status can only be declared when all three tests are reactive.
If you test 'POSITIVE', don’t panic. There are many people who test positive who live happy, long and healthy lives by adhering to anti-retroviral treatment and safe sex. As well, there are a variety of resources available to you.
You’ll receive counseling on how to take special care of yourself and your loved ones. Remember, HIV is NOT as easily transmitted as many other viruses. It CANNOT be transmitted via food, drink, saliva, mosquitoes, kissing, hugging, or touch. However, you MUST abstain from unprotected sex. This’ll help you protect yourself from getting other sexually transmitted diseases and prevent the spreading of HIV to your sex partners. You still can have sex but it has to be safe.
The nurse will likely request that you contact everybody you’ve had sex with in the past six months. You may have unknowingly passed the virus on to them. You should ask them to check their HIV status so that they can take appropriate action to prevent further HIV infections.
You don’t need to go through this alone. You may decide to tell one or some of your close friends before you tell your family. That’s your choice. However, you should talk to someone about it. Ignoring your HIV-positive status won’t make it go away.
If you feel like you can’t or don’t want to tell your family or friends, the nurse can share information with you about some of the services in Bangkok available to support you.
We recommend the following organisations:
- Rainbow Sky Association of Thailand
- The POZ Home Center Foundation
- SWING Thailand
- HIV Foundation Thailand
To learn more about what happens next, view the Live Positively section of this website.
The standard HIV testing procedure requires using 2-3 test kits with different methods to test the same blood. However, if the first test kit, usually the most sensitive, provides a non-reactive result, you receive a 'NEGATIVE' result.
If your result comes back 'NEGATIVE', you receive counseling on practices that will help you stay negative and live a healthy sex life. This includes a regular HIV test at least every three months.
Go check our Stay Safe section to find a range of information on how you can be sexually active while protecting your health and that of the people you play with.
It can be difficult to remember when you had your last sexual health check-up and when it’s time for your next one. It can also be difficult to know how often you should get tested for sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
The more sex you have, the more frequently you should have a sexual health check-up to test for HIV and other STIs. All men who have sex with men should be tested at least once a year, even if you only have one regular partner. If you have casual sex outside of your relationship, you (and your partner) should get tested at least every six months; if you (or your partner) have more than one to two casual partners a month, get tested every three months.