Prevalence of HIV/AIDS Among Black Women Explored
October 25, 2005
S.K. Whitmore of CDC's Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, Surveillance and Epidemiology, National Center for HIV/STD and TB Prevention, and colleagues analyzed surveillance data on HIV infection to investigate the virus' prevalence among black women. "HIV/AIDS has emerged as a persistent health threat to black women in the United States," they wrote. "For the past decade, HIV disease has been among the top 10 leading causes of death for this population."
The researchers analyzed national HIV surveillance data from 29 states with confidential name-based HIV reporting that have conducted integrated HIV/AIDS surveillance since at least 1998. The team also analyzed AIDS surveillance data from all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
"In 2002, black women represented 14 percent of women in the 29 states whose HIV data were analyzed but 72.3 percent of annual HIV infection diagnoses among women," the authors reported. "In that same year, black women were diagnosed with HIV infection at a rate of 68.7 per 100,000, approximately 23 times the rate for white women (three per 100,000) and four times that for Hispanic women (17.2 per 100,000). Likewise, in 2002, black women represented 13 percent of all women in the 50 states and the District of Columbia but an estimated 67.8 percent of new AIDS diagnoses among women. In that same year, black women were diagnosed with AIDS at a rate of 48 per 100,000, approximately 23 times the rate for white women (2.1 per 100,000) and more than four times that for Hispanic women (10.6 per 100,000)."
The researchers concluded, "Because black women are disproportionately affected by HIV/AIDS, effective strategies are needed to prevent new HIV infections, to detect infections early and to assure adequate treatment for black women who are infected with HIV."
The report, "Epidemiology of HIV/AIDS Among Non-Hispanic Black Women in the United States," appeared in the Journal of the National Medical Association (2005;97(7 Suppl):19S-24S).
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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.