Frequently Asked Questions for all programs

All of the individual program FAQs in place for your convenience.  If you don’t see your question or answer, then let us know.

General Information

Please refer to this link for the general hours of operation.  Specific programs (housing, syringe exchange, etc.) may have different hours and those will be specified on their program pages.

Yes, we do take appointments for some of our services.  You may schedule a time that works for you by using our online booking service for any of our tests, Medicaid enrollment, Overdose response training, and PrEP referrals.  Click here to schedule your appointment.


The tests are administered here at our office.  You can schedule an appointment or walk in.  We recommend making an appointment which can be scheduled most days from 9:30-11:30 AM and 1:30-4:30 PM (2:30 PM on Fridays).  Walk-ins are on  a first come, first served basis and can be done most days from 1:30-4:30 (2:30 PM on Fridays).

At this time, we do not take insurance.  You may pay by cash, check or credit card.

  • The test are confidential. Confidential testing means that the trained tester will be responsible for collecting the client’s contact information.
  • A small blood sample is required for the test. This is incredibly accurate testing technology.
  • If the test reacts with HIV, HCV or Syphilis antibodies,  a line will appear on the test and we will assist you in obtaining a confirmation test.  A confirmation test involves a blood draw and will look specifically for the virus.
  • The test is confidential. Confidential testing means that the trained tester will be responsible for collecting the client’s contact information under a strict privacy and confidentiality agreement.
  • For individuals with a penis, a small urine sample is required for the test. For individuals with a vagina, a self-administered vaginal swab is required. This sample will be sent to an offsite lab for testing.
  • Chlamydia and gonorrhea are curable. The treatment for these is a prescribed regimen of antibiotics.
  • A trained OAA counselor will answer any questions or concerns and provide each individual with education about safe sex practices, chlamydia and gonorrhea infections, partner discussions, and referrals to care if patient is symptomatic and/or pregnant.
  • Were you to receive a positive result, OAA will follow up with you to ensure that you are receiving necessary treatment. If you are not receiving treatment OAA staff will assist you with barriers to pursuing treatment.

No HIV test can detect HIV immediately after infection. If you think you’ve been exposed to HIV in the last 72 hours, talk to your health care provider about post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP), right away.

The time between when a person may have been exposed to HIV and when a test can tell for sure whether they have HIV is called the window period.

  • Our testing technology has a 6 week window period for HIV.  The window period refers to the number of weeks required for the human body to develop antibodies to after infection. During the window period a person may test negative even if they are carrying the virus.
  • Our testing technology has a 8 week window period for HCV.  The window period refers to the number of weeks required for the human body to develop antibodies to after infection. During the window period a person may test negative even if they are carrying the virus.
  • About 97% of people infected will have a positive HCV antibody test 6 months after exposure.

Living with HIV Housing Program


  • Monday-Friday from 9-11 AM, we are available by appointment only.


  • Monday-Thursday our office is open 1-5 PM
  • On Fridays, our office is open 1-3 PM
  • The Human Resource Council is a great place to start. Trained staff analyzes questions and/or problems and link people with social services that meet their needs. They operate an information and referral line at 406-549-5555 or 211 which is active from 12-5pm M-F.
  • YWCA is a fantastic resource for anyone dealing with or leaving a domestic violence situation, for those who have experienced sexual violence, and/or are experiencing homelessness. They run a 24/7 support line 406-544-1944 and offer many services such as transitional housing, emergency shelter, and services for families and children while folks work toward self-sufficiency and independence.
  • Valor House provides transitional housing and services for veterans. For an application, please call  406-829-3929.
  • The Missoula Poverello Center provides food, shelter and help to Missoula’s homeless and undeserved populations. 406-728-1809
  • Salvation Army of Missoula offers many services, including emergency shelter and winter shelter. 406-549-0710
  • For Section 8 housing registration information click here. Section 8 is a resource for lower income families and individuals to make housing more affordable.
  • Shelter + Care The S+C program is a permanent supportive housing program for the homeless. S+C is a rental assistance program specifically designed to help homeless disabled individuals and families receive adequate housing and supportive services. Once in the program, you would rent from a private landlord in Missoula, pay 30% of your monthly adjusted income towards rent and MHA will pay the rent difference. Supportive services are provided by local social service agencies. NOTE: S+C only accepts applicants referred through the Missoula Coordinated Entry System.
  • The low income energy assistance program or LIEAP can provide help with winter energy bills and home weatherization.
  • A list of Montana Bills Assistance Programs can be found here.  This is a good list of services and resources for low income individuals and families.

Drug User Health

The syringe program is open 1-5 PM Monday-Thursday and 1-3 PM on Fridays.

Yes!  The syringe services program is anonymous.  We don’t require your name, address, phone or any other identifying information.  We establish a Client ID during your first visit that will keep your identity safe.

If you are a first time user of the syringe program, we will establish your client ID.  Your client ID is what we use to keep your identity anonymous at future visits.

Once established, you can come in to the syringe program and dispose of any used syringes you may have and pick up new syringes and supplies.

If you’re unable to bring back used syringes to our office, then dispose your syringes in our 24-hour disposal box.  If that is not an option,  the next best thing is to follow the guidelines laid out here.

YES!  Here is a list of pharmacies that will sell syringes. 

Rosauers2350 S Reserve StYes$4-10 packShorts & Long
Walmart3555 Mullen RdYes$13-100 box$7 cheaper a box
Albertsons/Osco1003 E Broadway & 3800 RussellYes$5-10 pack2 friendly locations
Walgreens2527 N Reserve & 2100 BrooksYes/I.D. required$20-100 boxI.D. required
Costco3220 N ReserveYes$11-100 boxNeed Costco Card
Curry Health Center (UM)634 EddyYes/Will not turn anybody away$5-10 packIncludes sharps container
406 Clinic1315 WyomingYes/Will not turn anybody away$5-10 packIndependent from WMMHC
St. Patrick Hosp.500 W BroadwayYes$4-10 pack $25-100 boxIndependent from St. Pat’s


  • You can get tested for HIV and Hep C for FREE.
  • FREE Overdose Prevention and Response Training & FREE naloxone.
  • You can hang out in our drop-in center if you need a place to chill out.
  • We have coffee, water,  and other beverages to keep you hydrated and we try to keep some snacks on hand if you’re hungry.
  • FREE wifi and power to recharge your devices.

SSPs, which have also been referred to as syringe exchange programs (SEPs), needle exchange programs (NEPs) and needle-syringe programs (NSPs) are community-based programs that provide, access to sterile needles and syringes free of cost, facilitate safe disposal of used needles and syringes, and offer safer injection education. Many SSPs also provide linkages to critical services and programs, including substance use disorder treatment programs; overdose prevention education; screening, care, and treatment for HIV and viral hepatitis; HIV pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP); prevention of mother-to-child transmission; hepatitis A and hepatitis B vaccination; screening for other sexually transmitted diseases and tuberculosis; partner services; and other medical, social, and mental health services.

Based on existing evidence, the U.S. Surgeon General has determined that SSPs, when part of a comprehensive prevention strategy, can play a critical role in preventing HIV among persons who inject drugs (PWID); can facilitate entry into drug treatment and medical services; and do not increase the unsafe illegal injection of drugs. These programs have also been associated with reduced risk for infection with hepatitis C virus (HCV).

Many SSPs offer other infection prevention materials (e.g., alcohol swabs, vials of sterile water), condoms, and services, such as education on safer injection practices and wound care; overdose prevention; referral to substance use disorder treatment programs including medication-assisted treatment; and counseling and testing for HIV and viral hepatitis. SSPs also provide linkages to other critical services and programs, including screening, care, and treatment for HIV and viral hepatitis, HIV pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), prevention of mother-to-child transmission, hepatitis A and hepatitis B vaccination, screening for other sexually transmitted diseases and tuberculosis, partner services, and other medical, social, and mental health services.  SSPs also protect the public and first responders by providing safe needle disposal and by reducing the number of people living with HIV and HCV infections who could transmit those infections to others.

No. Based on existing evidence, the U.S. Surgeon General has determined  that SSPs, when part of a comprehensive HIV prevention strategy, do not increase the illegal use of drugs by injection. The opportunity to expand HIV and viral hepatitis prevention services through SSPs will support communities in their efforts to identify and prevent new infections. SSPs are an effective public health intervention that can reduce the transmission of HIV and facilitate entry into drug treatment and medical services, without increasing illegal injection of drugs. SSPs often provide other services important to improving the health of persons who inject drugs (PWID), including referrals to substance use disorder and mental health services, physical health care, social services, overdose prevention and recovery support services. Studies also show that SSPs protect the public and first responders by providing safe needle disposal.

Treatment Center

Our program philosophy is that we want people to “Come as you are” to our program. Every person on the spectrum of examining their drug and alcohol use will find a place to contemplate and implement change.

You decide where to start. We’ll help guide you through the process.  Here are some important things you’ll need to determine your starting point.

  1. It is important to have health insurance or the ability to pay for treatment. If you do not have insurance at this time we can help you get started.
  2. Come into OAA to register.
  3. Schedule an appointment with the Intake Coordinator

No, although some services may require a wait. In the meantime, we offer Peer Support, a drop-in center, and various drop in groups that you can participate in when you’re ready.

We can work with your treatment mandates. However, it depends on your specific requirements. We will be a state approved level 1 and 2.1 chemical dependency treatment center. We welcome all inquiries regarding your treatment requirements.

Let them know that we will provide state approved Level 2.1 treatment. If they ask about UA testing, we can offer this service at the client’s request. If they ask about a specific client, clearly state that we do not discuss client specific questions for any of our services without a signed release of information. Offer to a message and our treatment staff will return the call.

At Uncovery, Level 1 care consists of 1-8 hours per week of individual, group, and experiential therapy. Level 2.1 or Intensive Outpatient care consists of 9 or more hours of individual, group and experiential therapy per week.

Yes, our ongoing programs meet this need.