12.13.2012

Young Black Men at Highest Risk for HIV, Study Says

“1 in 16 black men will be diagnosed with HIV infection in their lifetime.”

Attention! We are not out of the woods on this yet! Young black men have the highest prevalence of new HIV contractions.

According tp a recent study, of the 12,000 new cases of HIV examined by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 7,000 were found to be African-American adolescents, ages 13-24.  And, according to the CDC, “1 in 16 black men and 1 in 30 black women will be diagnosed with HIV infection in their lifetime!”

More work is needed in community and school interventions to help prevent the spread of HIV among young African Americans. Let’s face it, while the risk factors are higher for young African-American men, our young women are also at risk too!

Educating young people about early testing and protecting themselves is one of the most important things that can be done to combat this growing problem.

If there was ever an argument to support the new health care reform, high risk and the rate of new HIV infections among young African-Americans should be a major focus. Access to health care, contraceptives, culturally competent sex education, and HIV testing services are needed immediately to help stop the spread of HIV infection among our young people. This is not just an issue for our young African-American men, this is a matter for all communities to be concerned. The high infection rate among young people suggests that HIV likely personally affects someone we know and love or puts them at risk!  Help protect someone you love by encouraging them to get tested and connect to the resources to help them become educated on what can be done to ensure their own safety and that of others.

Click here to read more about this situation on TheGrio.com.