The overall number of new domestic HIV infections is about 50,000 every year. Gay and bisexual men -- or "men who have sex with men" (MSM) in public health jargon -- account for nearly two-thirds of new infections.
Infection rates in almost all groups are relatively stable -- except among young MSM, especially young MSM of color. Infections in that group have soared by 48% from 2006 to 2009. A recent study found almost one in three black MSM are positive, compared to about one in six white MSM. Young, positive black MSM are also among the least likely to be aware of their infection, putting their own health at risk (and potentially that of others).
Researchers, policy experts and advocates are trying to pinpoint why this is happening (there are many theories), and hope to mobilize a better response to the issue.
Rod McCullom has written and produced for ABC News and NBC, and has reported for Ebony, The Advocate, Colorlines, the Black AIDS Institute and others. Rod blogs on politics, pop culture and black gay news at rod20.com.
Comment by: Andy
Sat., Dec. 10, 2011 at 12:55 pm EST
Lets see, I counted one antiquidated story about a "cure", 1 historic observation, 4 discussions about new avenues of prevention, 1 description of the adap crisis, 2 decriptions of what groups are most at risk of getting HIV and 1 issue about criminalization. Methods of prevention and understanding who is at risk are important, but prevention doesn't really do much for people who have the virus. Still, these issues occupied no less than six out of ten "defining stories". Two more were history and ONLY TWO actually addressed the issues we face-the ADAP crisis and the rise in criminalization. These don't exactly show progress. It looks to me as if 2011 was a pretty grim beast with a window towards the past and a middle finger extended towards anyone living with the virus. I hope that in 2012, we begin to understand that people currently living with HIV have HIV related needs, and make some progress in addressing these.
Comment by: Dixie
Sun., Dec. 4, 2011 at 12:44 am EST
I was so saddened to hear about the 13 year old
boy who was denied admission to a school in Hershey, Pennsylvania because he was HIV positive. How incredible!
How sad that people are still so damn ignorant!
Bless Ryan White and this 13 year old boy. I am sorry that he doesn't want to show his face but
can you blame him? We live in a world of ignorant, condemning, and mean (it all goes together), people. It sickens me to think that in 2011, people can be so judgmental and so ignorant. I don't think that would have happened in the South, actually. I hope not.
Nonetheless, I admire Ryan White and it's a shame that, for all his struggles in the spotlight, all these years later, so much of our society is still so "in the dark". God Help Them! I guess all we can do is pray for them.
They need it much worse than we do. How do they sleep at night? oh yeah, they're stupid. Isn't that the worst disease in this country?????
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