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HIV Testing in Nonclinical Settings

hiv testing nonclinical HIV testing can be done in a variety of nonclinical or community-based settings, including fixed venues, outreach sites, or in a person’s home. Nonclinical settings are easily accessible and comfortable for populations who might not access medical services regularly. They typically provide same-day rapid HIV testing, might offer other HIV prevention services, and conduct recruitment services to get high-risk populations in for targeted HIV testing. HIV testing in these settings offers an effective way to bring HIV testing to the community. This section offers key references and information for persons conducting HIV testing in nonclinical settings.

CDC Guidance on HIV Testing in Nonclinical Settings

NEW! CDC issued program guidance for HIV testing providers called Implementing HIV Testing in Nonclinical Settings: A Guide for HIV Testing Providers. This guide supports the implementation of HIV testing services in nonclinical settings in the United States. The purpose of the guide is to familiarize providers with key programmatic issues and updates that impact HIV testing service delivery in nonclinical settings. Although this guidance is intended for CDC-funded nonclinical HIV testing providers, non-grantees may also find the content useful.

Implementing HIV Testing in Nonclinical Settings: A Guide for HIV Testing Providers complements the document Planning and Implementing HIV Testing and Linkage Programs in Nonclinical Settings: A Guide for Program Managers, and the Evaluation Guide for HIV Testing and Linkage Programs in Nonclinical Settings, which are both intended for HIV program managers.

Laboratory Certificate Requirements for HIV Testing in Nonclinical Settings

hiv testing nonclinical Nonclinical HIV testing sites using waived rapid HIV tests must either obtain their own certificate of waiver under the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA) or establish an agreement to work under the CLIA certificate of an existing laboratory. CLIA outlines quality standards for laboratory testing—including rapid HIV testing—to ensure the accuracy, reliability, and timeliness of patient test results. Agencies should contact their state or local health department for more information, including how to apply for a CLIA waiver. More information about CLIA certification and CLIA-waived tests, including how to establish a CLIA-waived HIV testing site, can be found on CDC’s website at the following links:

HIV Testing Technologies

Related Recommendations and Guidelines

Journal Articles

Acute HIV Infection

Home-Based HIV Self-Testing

Linkage and Referral

Prevention Counseling and HIV Testing

Targeting and Recruitment


Testing Couples Together for HIV

Testing Technologies and Approaches