Network faithful take note: CDC, AIDS.gov and a number of other national organizations are promoting National HIV Testing Day which is an important campaign to raise awareness about this preventable disease. Here are some sobering statistics worth noting:
- HIV is an acronym for Human Immunodeficiency Virus, a disease that can lead to the development of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Currently, there are no cures for HIV or AIDS, but knowledge is an effective tool in the prevention and treatment of the disease.
- While HIV can affect anyone regardless of race, class or gender, several groups experience a greater incidence and prevalence of the disease.
- Among racial/ethnic groups, HIV/AIDS disproportionately affects African Americans in the U.S.
- In 2009, African Americans accounted for 44% of all diagnoses of new HIV infections despite the fact that this group only accounts for less than 14% of the total U.S. population.
- In 2010, HIV was among the top 10 leading causes of death for African-American women between ages 15 and 64. In the District of Columbia, 92.4% of women living with HIV are African-American.
- In other minority groups, an estimated 20% of new HIV infections occurred among Hispanics in 2009, which is three times the rate of whites.
So what are you waiting for? Take a test and take control of your health and your life! To find a testing center near you, put your zip code in the box below.