Commentary & Opinion
U.S. Should Do More to Address Increasing HIV/AIDS Among Blacks, Opinion Piece Says
June 21, 2006
Twenty-five years after the first AIDS case was diagnosed, the "epidemic's face" in the U.S. is "becoming blacker and poorer," Kai Wright, a freelance journalist, writes in an Atlanta Journal-Constitution opinion piece. According to Wright, it is "long past time" that the U.S. public health system faces the fact that more than half of the estimated 40,000 newly diagnosed HIV-positive people each year in the U.S. are black. The "teetering public health systems" in the South -- where seven of the 10 states with the most "intense epidemics" are located -- "never served poor blacks well in the first place" and are "collapsing under the weight of AIDS," Wright says. States across the country "should wake up to" the HIV/AIDS "crisis" and develop "action plans" similar to that of Illinois, which passed a law "to address its black epidemic," according to Wright. States should strive to "get [HIV/AIDS] treatments to everyone who is afflicted," Wright says, concluding, "AIDS doesn't discriminate. Neither should our treatment of it" (Wright, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 6/19).
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.