World Aids Day

Tomorrow is World Aids Day, established in 1988 by the World Health Organization to create awareness of HIV, AIDS, how to prevent, and hopefully someday how to cure.

At this stage in the game it is hard to imagine there are very many people left in our world who do not have some first hand experience with this deadly virus.

The 2007 theme is "Stop AIDS Now, Keep the Promise - Leadership"

I live in Washington DC, where just a few days ago the mayor released a report indicating that Washington, DC is facing it's own modern AIDS epidemic. With the highest rate of HIV in the nation, it is important, now more than ever, that as the leaders of the free world, we the residents of our nation's capitol need to take action, and now. We can turn this report around, take a leadership role in educating our youth on prevention, educating each other on prevention and helping those who are already infected with their daily needs.

Here are some of the highlights of the DC report:

The major findings of the District of Columbia HIV/AIDS Epidemiology Annual Report are:

Between 1997 and 2006, almost 70 percent of all AIDS cases progressed from HIV to AIDS in less than 12 months after the initial HIV diagnosis, primarily due to late testing, compared to 39 percent nationally.

The District accounted for 9 percent of all pediatric AIDS cases in the United States during 2005. Between 2001 and 2006, there were 56 children ages 13 or younger diagnosed with either HIV or AIDS in the District of Columbia.

Although African-American residents account for 57percent of the District’s population, they account for 81percent of new reports of HIV cases. African-American women constitute 58 percent of the District’s female population, but account for 90 percent of all new female HIV cases.

Heterosexual contact in the District is the leading mode of HIV transmission at 37 percent of newly reported infections, while nationally men who have sex with men lead new transmissions.

The District’s rate for newly reported AIDS cases is higher than rates in Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York City, Detroit, and Chicago.

Nearly every ward in the District is impacted, though Wards 1, 5, 6 and 8 consistently had the highest numbers of residents diagnosed with HIV and AIDS.
The majority of newly reported cases were among residents ages 30 to 49.

Here are some links for more information:

DCFightsBack


Fight HIV in DC

World Health Organization

CDC

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