Charlie Sheen effect? ‘Record levels’ of STD testing followed actor’s HIV confession

He’s been labelled a bad boy and womanizer, but what about a champion for public health and sexual education?

On Nov. 17, 2015, Charlie Sheen told the world he was HIV-positive during an interview on NBC’s Today Show. Now, almost two years later, researchers say the actor may have inadvertently shed light on testing and practicing safe sex: “record levels” of HIV testing followed his confession.

Scientists from San Diego State University have dubbed it the “Charlie Sheen effect.” A-list actress Angelina Jolie, also had a similar effect in 2013 when she opened up about her double mastectomy after she tested positive for carrying the BRCA gene mutation.

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