This is an essay discussing whether or not AIDS testing should be mandatory.

Essay by hadarHigh School, 10th gradeA, March 2004

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AIDS, unfortunately is all too prevalent in our society today. Many people worry if they are at risk of being infected. With the proper precautions, the chances of being infected with HIV are slim. With this epidemic of HIV and AIDS come many controversial issues, probably because of the nature of the disease-it being sexually transmitted and greatly associated with the gay community. One of these issues being whether or not HIV testing should be mandatory for certain groups of people. Some believe that candidates for mandatory HIV testing include such groups as healthcare professionals, pregnant women, inmates, and alleged sexual assailants. In the US, HIV testing is mandatory for immigrants entering the country. They must test HIV negative to obtain a permanent visa to come to this country. Other groups of people that, per the federal government, must be tested for HIV are the military and federal prison inmates.

Individual state laws are totally separate from this.

People believe that health care professionals should be among those that are mandated to have HIV testing applied to them. The people that support mandatory testing argue that their well-being is at risk, as well as others whom they share a doctor, nurse, dentist, surgeon, etc. with. In 1987, a dentist in Florida named David Acer was diagnosed with AIDS. By 1989 he had already transmitted the disease to at least one patient, Kimberly Bergalis, who was diagnosed with it. It is people like her and her family that have been fighting to make HIV testing mandatory for healthcare professionals. After she came forward (very publicly) several of Dr. Acer's patients claimed that, they too, had been infected with HIV from their dentist. Many people feel that they should know whether or not the person performing any kind of operation or procedure...