AIDS FUNDRAISERS: Fading In Popularity as Disease Becomes Class, Race-Specific
Differences in patient population demographics are causing some health-related fundraisers to lose visibility, the Baltimore Sun reports. In what it calls "a tale of two diseases," the Sun indicates that this year's Susan G. Komen Foundation's breast cancer fundraiser "Race for the Cure" drew 25,000 participants and $1.2 million in proceeds in Baltimore, while the annual AIDS Walk attracted only 2,000 walkers and raised a little over $176,000. Organizers of the Baltimore AIDS Walk reasoned that the breast cancer event was more popular this year because "breast cancer affects more people" -- approximately 3,500 women are diagnosed in Maryland each year -- and also affects "all races and classes of women." Conversely, "AIDS has quietly transformed from an affliction of gay men into a disease primarily of the poor and black" -- in 1999, 82% of Maryland residents infected with HIV were black -- a group less likely to participate and contribute money to fundraisers like the AIDS Walk, according to the Sun. Furthermore, a "complacency" about AIDS has sprung from advancements in HIV treatment, according to aThis is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.