Ring the Alarm! Blacks/African-Americans Still Account for Disproportionately Higher Rates of HIV/AIDS Cases in the United States

With news of a second patient cured of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, the world rejoiced that there may finally be some end in sight for this deadly epidemic that has already claimed the lives of over 40 million people worldwide. Educational campaigns and antiretroviral therapies (ART)-a cocktail of drugs to control HIV infection- have reduced the number of transmissions and deaths due to HIV and AIDS, but we are still a very long way to go before there is a cure.

In the United States, people who are already infected are living longer due to the availability of ART and rates of transmission of new cases have actually plateaued after a few years of decline in the overall populace. However, among African-Americans, the statistics are alarming. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “Blacks/African-Americans account for a higher proportion of new HIV diagnoses and people living with HIV, compared to other races/ethnicities. In 2017, blacks/African-Americans accounted for 13% of the US population but 43% (16,694) of the 38,739 new HIV diagnoses in the United States and dependent areas.”

One of the greatest challenges is that one in seven Blacks/African-Americans is unaware that they even have HIV, and thus do not take precautions to prevent transmission to others and also do not seek treatment. If you are unaware of your HIV status, you may walk-in or schedule an appointment for a confidential HIV test at any of our convenient Primary Medical Care Center community clinics, you may visit our website at www.primarymed.com, or call (305)751-1500 for our Miami-Dade clinic, or (954)289-0000 for our Broward clinic. Source: https://www.cdc.gov/hiv/group/racialethnic/africanamericans/index.html