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Health Department providing education and new rapid HIV/Syphilis test at Mid-Missouri PrideFest

Large letters made out of balloons spell out L O V E in front of a red fence.
Rebecca Smith
Mid-Missouri PrideFest happens each fall. It includes a street fair, music performances, drag shows and more.

Columbia/Boone County Public Health & Human Services will be at Mid-Missouri PrideFest this weekend – offering STI testing, education and a new rapid test that checks for both HIV and syphilis.

Tracey Bathe, the prevention and investigation manager at the health department, said the health department’s been tabling at PrideFest for years.

“We just want to be there to support and give information to not only the people who we have served for years, and years and years, but youth coming up, and who may not have the information,” Bathe said.

She said the will be offering the new rapid test alongside the Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services both Saturday and Sunday during PrideFest.

“Some people may choose not to do the testing at Pride,” Bathe said. “And they may choose just to take some information and we're happy to test them when it's the right time for them.”

The health department offers STI testing five days a week and rapid HIV testing on Thursday afternoons from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at its office on West Worley Street.

The health department will be offering additional services on Saturday – including health assessments from the Health on Wheels van, Narcan education and mpox vaccinations.

Rebecca Smith is an award-winning reporter and producer for the KBIA Health & Wealth Desk. Born and raised outside of Rolla, Missouri, she has a passion for diving into often overlooked issues that affect the rural populations of her state – especially stories that broaden people’s perception of “rural” life.
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