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The Black Epidemic: By the Numbers

Part of Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009 -- Executive Summary

Februray 2009

HIV Infection in America

Race of Newly Infected

An estimated 56,300 people were newly infected in 2006, the most recent year for which data is available. The racial breakdown among them was:

Black45 percent
White35 percent
Latino17 percent
Other Ethnicities3 percent

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Race of All HIV-Positive

An estimated 1.1 million people are HIV positive in the United States. The racial breakdown among them is:

Black46.1 percent
White34.6 percent
Latino17.5 percent
Other Ethnicities1.8 percent

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Rate of Infection

Black Americans were infected at a rate seven times that of whites in 2006 -- and Black women were infected at a rate almost 15 times that of whites. The number of people infected per 100,000, by race, was:

Among Blacks83.7
Among Latinos29.3
Among Native Americans14.6
Among Whites11.5
Among Asian/Pacific Islander10.3

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Infection Over Time

Black Americans' share of new infections has grown steadily over time. By the late 1980s, Blacks began accounting for the largest share of new infections.

Estimated new human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections, by race/ethnicity, extended back-calculation model, 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, 1977-2006:

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009


HIV Infections, Up Close

Among Women

An estimated 14,410 Black, white and Latina women were newly infected in 2006. The racial breakdown among them was:

Black61 percent
White23 percent
Latina16 percent

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Among Men

An estimated 39,820 Black, white and Latino men were newly infected in 2006. The racial breakdown among them was:

Black46 percent
White36 percent
Latino18 percent

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Among Gay and Bisexual Men

Gay and bisexual men accounted for more than half of all new infections in 2006. The racial breakdown among them was:

Black46 percent
White35 percent
Latino19 percent

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Where Newly HIV-Positive Live

The South is the modern epidemic's geographic frontline, in part because of its sizable Black population. The regional breakdown for new infections in 2006 was:

South46.7 percent
Northeast25.4 percent
West16.1 percent
Midwest11.6 percent

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009


Map of the Black AIDS Epidemic

Black communities in the Northeast and Southeast -- particularly in Florida, Maryland and New York -- had the highest rates of HIV infection between 2002 and 2006. Overall, the prevalence of HIV among Blacks is nearly eight times that among whites.*

Sources:
CDC, HIV/AIDS Surveillance by Race/Ethnicity, slide set, accessed December 17, 2008, at www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/surveillance/resources/slides/race-ethnicity/index.htm.
*CDC, HIV Prevalence Estimates -- United States, 2006, MMWR, 57(39);1073-1076.


HIV Testing and Transmission in America

Race of Americans Tested

One in ten Americans said in 2006 that they got tested for HIV in the previous year, but Blacks tested at higher rates than any other racial or ethnic group. The share of people who reported getting tested was:

Among Blacks21.7
Among Latinos12.6
Among Whites8

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Race of Undiagnosed HIV-Positive

An estimated one in five HIV positive Americans don't know they are infected.* But the most recent race-based data shows more than half of positive Blacks are undiagnosed.

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Source: Glynn MK and Rhodes P. Estimated HIV Prevalence in the United States at the end of 2003. Presentation at the 2005 National HIV Prevention Conference, June 14, 2005. Cited in CDC presentation to Black AIDS Institute physicians' forum, October 2006.
* CDC, HIV Prevalence Estimates -- United States, 2006, MMWR, 57(39);1073-1076.

How Black Men Get Infected

Male-to-male sexual contact was the primary risk factor for 72 percent of all men infected in 2006. Among Black men who tested positive, risk factors included:

Male-to-male sex63 percent
Heterosexual sex20 percent
Injection drug use12 percent
IDU and male-to-male sex4 percent

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Undiagnosed Gay and Bisexual Men

A five-city study published in 2005 found 46 percent of Black gay and bisexual men to be HIV positive; well over half of them did not know it. The percentage of undiagnosed infections was:

Among Blacks67
Among Latinos48
Among Multiracial50 percent
Among White18

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

How Black Women Get Infected

Black women got infected at a rate 18 times that of whites in 2006. Risk factors included:

Sex with men80 percent
Injection drug use20 percent

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

How STDs Help HIV

A person with an STD is two to five times more likely to contract HIV when exposed to it, and HIV positive people who have an STD are more infectious.* In 2006, Blacks had the highest rates of all STDs.

Infection rate among Black women vs. white women for:
Chlamydia7x higher
Gonorrhea14x higher
Syphilis16x higher

Infection rate among Black men vs. white men for:
Chlamydia11x higher
Gonorrhea25x higher
Syphilis5x higher
Sources: CDC, Sexually Transmitted Disease Surveillance, 2006. November 2007.
*CDC, The Role of STD Detection and Treatment in HIV Prevention -- CDC Fact Sheet, accessed on December 17, 2008, at www.cdc.gov/std/hiv/STDFactSTD&HIV.htm#MoreInfo. 54(24);597-601.


HIV Treatment and Death in America

Who's Dying

In 2006, 7,426 Black Americans died from AIDS -- more than twice that of any other group, but 1,253 fewer than the previous year. The racial breakdown for all Americans killed by AIDS as of 2006 is:

Black38.5 percent
White42.3 percent
Latino14.2 percent

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Who's Living

Black Americans are less likely to live 10 years with HIV infection. The share of people diagnosed between 1997 and 2004 who were still alive after nine years is:

Among Blacks66 percent
Among Native Americans67 percent
Among Latinos74 percent
Among Whites75 percent
Among Asian/Pacific Islanders81 percent

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Advanced Disease

Since combination therapy became available in the mid-1990s, Blacks have represented the largest share of people with HIV infections that have advanced to AIDS.

Proportion of AIDS cases among adults and adolescents by race/ethnicity and year of diagnosis, United States and dependent areas, 1985-2006:

Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009

Source: CDC, AIDS Surveillance -- General Epidemiology through 2006, slide set accessed on December 20, 2008 at www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/surveillance/resources/slides/epidemiology/index.htm.
Note: Data have been adjusted for reporting delays.



  
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This article was provided by Black AIDS Institute. It is a part of the publication Making Change Real: The State of AIDS in Black America 2009 -- Executive Summary. Visit Black AIDS Institute's website to find out more about their activities and publications.
 

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