- Nearly one million Americans are living with HIV and more than 40 million people around the world are infected.
- Women account for a growing share of new AIDS diagnoses in the U.S. rising from 8% of AIDS diagnoses in 1985 to 27% in 2003.
- African American women accounted for 67% of estimated female AIDS cases in 2003, but only 3% of the U.S. female population.
- Latina women accounted for 16% of estimated female AIDS cases in 2003, and 13% of the female population.
- Most female AIDS cases were diagnosed between the ages of 25 and 44 (71%). This indicates that many were likely infected several years earlier.
- In 2002, teen girls accounted for half 51% of HIV cases reported among those ages 13-19, young women ages 20-24 accounted for 37% of HIV cases in their age group.
- Most AIDS diagnoses among women are due to heterosexual transmission (71% of estimated new AIDS diagnoses in 2003) followed by injection drug use (27%)
- Among younger women, ages 20-24 heterosexual transmission accounts for 79% of estimated new AIDS cases and 61% among teen girls, ages 13-19.
- The HIV Cost and Services Utilization Study (HCSUS), the only nationally representative study of people with HIV/AIDS receiving regular ongoing medical care for HIV infection, found that women with HIV were disproportionately low-income.
- Nearly two-thirds (64%) had annual incomes below $10,000 compared to (41%) of men.
- Most women with HIV/AIDS receiving medical care have children under age 18 in their homes (76%), which may complicate their ability to manage their own illness.
- Women with HIV were more likely to postpone care because they lacked transportation (26%) or were too sick to go to the doctor (23%) than men (12% and 14%)
On line references: www.kaisernetwork.org
How to Become More Involved
- Get educated about the virus, the disease and the statistics affecting your community and of the world.
- Be aware of your status, get tested!
- Stay involved in the political process because research dollars and funding are at stake.
- Spread your knowledge to those you love and the friends you care about and whomever you feel will benefit from the information.
- Volunteer your time at a local AIDS Services Organization