Today is the 8th annual National Latino AIDS Awareness Day (NLAAD), which aims to shine light on the impact the disease is having on the Latino community in the United States. It happens every year on October 15th to mark the end of Hispanic Heritage Month. This year’s theme is Save a Life, It May be your Own. Get Tested for HIV or (Salva una Vida, Podría ser la Tuya. Hazte la Prueba del VIH). The mission is to reach Latino communities with the message of promoting HIV testing and knowledge.
Besides African Americans, Latinos are another group that are highly affected by HIV.
- Latinos are 15% of the U.S. population, but are 17% of new infections.
- The rate of new HIV infections among Latino men is more than double that of white men, while…
- The rate of new HIV infections among Latinas is nearly four times that of white women.
- 19% of Latinos in the U.S. are living with HIV/AIDS
- From 2005 to 2008, HIV diagnoses increased by 5% among Hispanics/Latinos.
Another important factor is the late diagnoses that happens. According to the NLAAD website:
CDC data shows that Hispanics/Latinos progress to AIDS faster than any other racial or ethnic group with 42% being diagnosed with AIDS within 12 months after learning of their positive HIV status compared to 34% late diagnosis among white non-Hispanic and 35% among blacks.
So on this day, we “Rock the Red Pump” in honor of National Latino AIDS Awareness Day. When HIV affects one of us, it affects us all.