200,000 americans are hiv positive and don't know it


200,000 americans are hiv positive and don't know it


About 200,000 Americans are infected with HIV and don't know it, 850,000 to 950,000 Americans are HIV positive, and 40,000 people are newly infected each year in the USA, says the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If these figures are accurate, it means that about one quarter of all Americans who are HIV positive don't know it.

Today is National HIV Testing Day (NHTD), the 11th annual event. It is sponsored by CDC and the National Association of People with AIDS. National HIV Testing Days started in 1995.

These facts spurred the CDC and the National Association of People with AIDS to sponsor the 11th Annual National HIV Testing Day. The National Association of People with AIDS is the oldest association of its kind in the world - it was formed in 1983.

25 years ago today, AIDS was first mentioned as 5 Los Angeles males were identified. At that time the five men were mentioned, but not the name of their illness and how or why they got ill.

At first everyone thought AIDS only infected gay men and drug addicts who used syringes. However, over the last couple of decades various groups have become infected. In the USA and much of the developed world the number of people becoming infected with HIV has been growing among heterosexual women and older people.

Here are some facts (USA):

-- Today 25% of new infections are among women

-- 67% of female infections are among African-American women

-- 17% of female infections are among Caucasian women

-- 15% of female infections are among Hispanic women

-- In 1985 3% of infections resulted from heterosexual sex

-- In 2004 31% of infections resulted from heterosexual sex

-- Washington D.C. has the highest HIV/AIDS rates in the USA

The HIV test involves a mouth swab. Results appear in about 20 minutes.

Click here to find a test site near you.

Across the USA thousands of HIV counselling and test sites, state and local health departments, and many others will take part in NHTD events. A campaign kit for groups has been developed by NAPWA and is available for order or download (7MB PDF).

Who is at risk of HIV infection in the USA?

Evidence points to HIV being in the USA since 1978. If you answer yes to any of the questions below you should seek testing, especially if the event took place after 1978.

-- Have you ever injected drugs yourself? Were the needles, syringes, cotton or water shared with others?

-- Have you had unprotected sex with multiple partners, men who have sex with men, or anonymous partners? This includes vaginal, anal or oral sex.

-- Have you traded sex for money or drugs?

-- Were you ever treated for or diagnosed with hepatitis, TB or an STD (sexually transmitted disease)?

-- Did you have a blood transfusion or clotting factor during the period 1978-1985?

-- Have you had unprotected sex with anyone who might answer yes to one of the questions above?

Editor: womenhealthsecret.com


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