Having access to high-quality health care, HIV education programs, and adequate housing can affect the health of those who are already infected with HIV and those at risk of contracting it.
4. In the African American community, people are not aware of their HIV status. This lack of awareness can translate into a late diagnosis which means the possibility of more transmission of the disease as well as decreased opportunities for early medical intervention.
5. There is a stigma in the African American community regarding HIV and HIV testing. The fear and homophobia in the community can keep people away from testing and counseling facilities.
Though there are not any surefire ways to prevent the higher rates of HIV in Black women, Dr. Hodder and her team did create a working model to offer several solutions to curb this epidemic.
They believe a four-pronged approach would work best, consisting of:
1. Expanding HIV testing
2. Finding ways to reduce the time between when one is infected with HIV and when he/she is tested for the disease
3. Finding ways to curb the drop-out rate from HIV/AIDS treatment programs
4. Create treatments to better suppress viral loads in HIV infected patients
No matter why this rate is so high, it is clear that health care, government, and nonprofit agencies need to focus on this community or one can expect the rates to increase.
CDC.gov. Web. 12 March 12, 2012. “HIV among African Americans.” http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/aa
MedicalNewsToday.com. Web. Published 11 March 2012. “More HIV among Black Women then Previously Thought, USA.” http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/242762.php
Reviewed March 13, 2012
by Michele Blacksberg RN
Edited by Jody Smith