Armed Forces News

Servicemembers must be tested for HIV every two years, according to a new Defense Department health policy change. Previously, said Dr. David N. Tornberg, principal Defense Department deputy for clinical policy, HIV testing intervals varied among the armed services. Today, “we’re optimizing testing,” Tornberg explained, citing medical studies that show very few people with HIV become sick with AIDS within two years of being infected. Therefore, service members who test HIV positive under the new two-year interval, he noted, are most likely to benefit from anti-viral drugs and other treatments that help keep the disease at bay. The two-year interval also enables DoD to consolidate HIV testing for deployments. For example, he said, Guard and Reserve members are now to have been tested for HIV within two years of a mobilization of more than 30 days.