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It's A Sin: Channel 4 Series Helped A Rise In HIV Testing

It's A Sin: Channel 4 Series Helped A Rise In HIV Testing

Russell T Davies’ hugely powerful drama has had a significant impact on people requesting HIV tests.

Kimberley Bond

Kimberley Bond

New figures have shown just how much of an impact It's A Sin has had on people looking to order HIV tests.

The Channel 4 drama, written by multi-BAFTA award-winner Russell T Davies, followed a group of friends in the 1980s, and how their lives change in the space of a decade after the AIDS crisis hits.

The show, which has been one of Channel 4's biggest series to date and having amassed over 18.9m views on All 4, has since contributed to a significant rise in people requesting an AIDS test.

Figures from HIV and sexual health charity Terrence Higgins Trust, shows HIV tests being ordered at a faster rate than ever before when the drama was broadcast.

It's A Sin's broadcast coincided with National HIV Testing Week - on the first day, orders of HIV tests more than tripled compared to the charity's previous biggest day of orders. Across the week over 17k orders of HIV tests were placed - more than double the number ordered during the previous National HIV Testing Week (8.2k).

It's A Sin won praise for its frank depiction of sex in the 80s (
Channel 4)

The charity's data shows that its helpline which provides support and advice around HIV and sexual health experienced a 30 per cent increase in calls the day after It's a Sin launched whilst visits to their website have more than doubled, including a growth in visits to pages providing information about the virus and transmission.

In addition to this, sales of Philip Normal's It's a Sin-inspired 'La' t-shirt have raised over £250,000 for the charity.

Ian Katz, Chief Content Officer, Channel 4 said of the news: "It's thrilling that It's a Sin has touched so many people in in such a powerful way. It's a wonderful example of how great television can emotionally engage millions of people and leave a real legacy of positive change - just what Channel 4 is there for."

The series followed a group of friends as they navigated the 1980s (
Channel 4)

Ian Green, Chief Executive at Terrence Higgins Trust, added: "It's A Sin has had an amazing impact and I'm thrilled the series has been so successful. The series examines a time in our history we must never forget - when people were dying of a mystery illness and we didn't know why.

"But it's also important that everyone knows how much HIV has changed since then thanks to massive improvements in preventing, testing for and treating HIV. You can now live a long, healthy life with HIV and effective treatment means you won't pass on the virus to anyone else.

Colin's storyline in It's A Sin was particularly emotional (
Channel 4)

"We've seen the 'It's A Sin effect' on National HIV Testing Week with tests being ordered at a faster rate than ever before off the back of the series. That's a brilliant legacy for the series."

You can watch the entire series of It's A Sin on All 4 now.

Featured Image Credit: Channel 4

Topics: Dating, Love, TV News, TV & Film, Sex & Relationships, Channel 4