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Medical News & Perspectives
November 27, 2018

Have Tent, Will Do Pop-up HIV Screening

JAMA. 2018;320(20):2063-2065. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.16245

Getting tested for HIV during his senior year at Georgetown University spurred Mackenzie Copley to volunteer with screening efforts in the community. A week after he was tested, Copley skipped calculus class to screen people for HIV in front of a Washington, DC, supermarket.

“We were screening about 60 people every day. But we were turning away about 20 uninsured people every day,” because a for-profit company was conducting the screening, Copley said.

“I thought that was ridiculous. Those people [uninsured individuals] need to get screened more than anyone else. They have limited access to care. I asked management if we could screen them. They said no. So 21-year-old me just said, ‘You know, I’m going to start a nonprofit and screen everyone.’”