HIV in the Black Community: 5 Facts

Each year, National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is observed on February 7. It is used to bring awareness to HIV in the Black Community and the continued devastating impacts that hinder the U.S. HIV response.

Below are five facts about the impact of HIV in the Black community, provided by amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research:

  1. Black Americans accounted for 42% of new HIV diagnoses in 2019, despite representing only 13% of the U.S. population. Black Americans are at higher risk of HIV exposure. While prevention efforts have helped reduce the annual number of new HIV diagnoses among African Americans over the last decade, progress has not been uniform across the entire U.S. Black community.
  2. Black gay and bisexual men account for approximately 1 in 4 new HIV diagnoses in the U.S. Black gay and bisexual men are at highest risk for HIV among African Americans, particularly those aged 13 to 34 who account for 3 in 4 diagnoses among Black Americans. Black gay and bisexual men face many challenges placing them at higher risk for HIV, including delays in access to care, lower percentages of viral suppression, and socioeconomic factors such as higher poverty rates and stigma.
  3. About 1 in 7 Black Americans living with HIV do not know they are infected.  Late diagnosis of HIV infection is common in African-American communities and results in missed opportunities to get early medical care and prevent transmission to others.
  4. Black transgender women are more likely to be diagnosed with HIV than transgender women of other races/ethnicities. Black trans women account for nearly one half of new HIV diagnoses among trans women; Latinx trans women account for about 1 in 3, and white trans women less than 1 in 10.
  5. Rates of HIV among Black women in the U.S. have declined. The number of new HIV diagnoses among Black women fell 10% from 2014 to 2018. Despite these gains, new HIV diagnoses among Black women are still high compared to women of other races/ethnicities. More than half of new HIV diagnoses for women continue to be among Black women.

For more information about HIV/AIDS and African Americans, read this CDC page.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of A Second Chance, Inc.

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