For the last few weeks, members of the Adult Performers Actors Guild, especially our board of officers, have been questioning the functionality of the current test used for the detection of HIV for performers in the adult industry. Through research and discussion with our APAG and PASS affiliated doctor, Dr. Jason Goldman, we learned that the test we currently use to detect HIV allows for those on antiviral medication, medication that suppresses the HIV virus in your system, to potentially pass through our testing system and into our worker pool. This concern was met with dismay and rejection from some within the Free Speech Coalition, who currently manage our PASS performer testing service and database. Last night, we attended a meeting where we were given the opportunity to discuss these concerns with Cutting Edge Testing’s Dr. Peter Miao. After careful explanation, and clarification, our concerns were in fact correct.
In our testing panel, the HIV 1 Nat by PCR DNA, is the test performers take. While it can show within a matter of 10-14 days if a person has become infected with HIV, this test DOES NOT show if a performer has had the virus before, meaning they are taking medication to suppress the virus. The doctor also confirmed our concerns that viral loads change and multiply at a rapid rate, so while someone on medication may test negative one day, the viral load can spike thus making the virus transmittable. It was confirmed that this can happen within our two week testing window.
Given the recent poll that the Adult Performers Actors Guild ran, we can confidently say performers are not comfortable with this hole in our testing. Because of this, the officers of APAG want our testing to change, and we are calling for performer support to demand this change immediately. We would like the industry to halt production, having every active performer demand and take the HIV antigen test before returning back to production. We want our testing panel to include this antigen test. The test will be taken by every performer upon entering the industry, and then every six months thereafter.
As performers, it is up to us to demand the appropriate change for our protection! While undetected can mean intransmissible, your undetected status can change in an instant. Undetected should never mean undisclosed, and this is a major concern for every performer. Some will say that it is discrimination to prevent people with HIV from performing in our talent pool, but our response is that CONSENT overrules this matter, and performer consent is more important than anything. In the adult industry, where our lives are put on the line through the transfer of bodily fluid that may or may not be HIV+, we must be vigilant.
The Officers of the Adult Performers Actors Guild
President Sean Michaels
Vice President Alana Evans
2nd Vice President Melissa Hill
Secretary/Treasurer Kelly Pierce
Sergeant at Arms Amber Lynn
Board Member Jennifer “Ruby” Allbaugh
Board Member Tony Tedeschi
Parliamentarian Jorge Reano