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Press Release

Statement From the AIDS Foundation of Chicago Regarding New HIV Infection Figures From CDC Scheduled for Release Aug. 3

August 1, 2008

As world leaders, researchers and advocates arrive in Mexico City for the International AIDS Conference (Aug. 3-8), the AIDS Foundation of Chicago (AFC) has learned that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is expected to announce on Aug. 3 significantly higher HIV incidence numbers for the United States.

Past CDC estimates have been 40,000 new infections per year; the new number revises HIV infections to 56,000 annually, with a range of 48,200 to 64,500, according to sources who have reviewed the data. The CDC estimates a steady rise in infections occurring since the early 1990s, with increases primarily among gay men.

In reaction to the pending announcement Mark Ishaug, AFC president/CEO, issued the following statement:

"These new estimates paint a soberingly accurate portrait of the AIDS epidemic and reveal an utter lack of investment in prevention research and programs, especially for gay men and African Americans.

"The federal government must commit to speeding up the rollout of new interventions with urgency. It's flat-out embarrassing that nearly three decades into the epidemic of our lifetime, the United States still has no comprehensive strategy to prevent HIV transmission, increase access to HIV care, and reduce racial disparities in the epidemic. Nevermind that the U.S. requires nations that apply for billions of dollars in federal aid under the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief to develop such plans.

"The federal government and states must make responding to the HIV epidemic among gay men and African Americans a funding and program priority."

The following AFC representatives are in Mexico City for the six-day conference and will be available for interviews and further commentary:

  • Mark Ishaug, AFC President/CEO
  • David Ernesto Munar, AFC Vice President
  • Jim Pickett, AFC Director of Advocacy

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This article was provided by AIDS Foundation of Chicago.
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AIDS 2008 Newsroom