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U.S. News

South Dakota HIV Cases Top 30 for Second Year in a Row

March 12, 2007

The state Department of Health's recently released South Dakota HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report shows 34 new HIV cases were diagnosed in 2006 -- the highest number since 1995, when 35 new cases were logged. Last year's total is up from 33 new cases in 2005.

Despite the increase, South Dakota has had just 529 cumulative HIV/AIDS cases since its first diagnosis was made in 1985. "Nationally in 2005, South Dakota had the fourth-lowest rate of adults and adolescents living with HIV infection (28 per 100,000 population) in the country, just above Iowa at 22, Wyoming at 21, and North Dakota at 14," said state epidemiologist Dr. Lon Kightlinger. "South Dakota had the second-lowest rate of people living with AIDS, 19 per 100,000 population, just above North Dakota with 13."

African Americans and Native Americans are disproportionately affected by AIDS in South Dakota. Comprising less than 1 percent of the population, blacks account for 19 percent of HIV/AIDS cases. Native Americans represent 9 percent of the state's population but 16 percent of its HIV/AIDS cases.

Men who have sex with men accounted for 36 percent of cases, sex among heterosexuals for 25 percent, and injection drug use for 17 percent.

"We are also seeing increases in other [STDs] such as gonorrhea, syphilis, and chlamydia, which is not surprising since the risk factors are the same: injection drug use, multiple partners, unprotected sex," said Kightlinger. "People who practice these behaviors need to know they are at risk for HIV/AIDS, other [STDs], and hepatitis. The only way to find out whether you're infected is to be tested."

Back to other news for March 12, 2007

Adapted from:
Rapid City Journal
03.07.07; Mary Garrigan

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This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
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