Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations
Brazil Launches First HIV/AIDS Prevention Campaign Aimed at Young Gay Men
Brazil on Tuesday launched its first HIV/AIDS awareness campaign targeted specifically toward young gay men, Reuters reports. Brazil's "aggressive" HIV/AIDS prevention program previously avoided "singling out" men who have sex with men out of fear that it could lead to more discrimination against them. However, with infection rates for young gay men increasing -- 8.7% between 1996 and 2001 for gay men between the ages of 15 and 24, and 3.4% for gay men between the ages of 25 and 34 over the same time period -- officials decided that "now the time has come to act," Paulo Teixeira, coordinator of the country's AIDS program, said. The campaign, which was developed in consultation with gay rights activists, kicked off Tuesday night with a "centerpiece" commercial during prime-time television. The ad features a young gay man who is experiencing trouble with his boyfriend and receives support from his family. It ends with the slogan: "Respecting differences is as important as using a condom." Similar ads are running in gay movie theaters and magazines, and members of 80 gay groups are distributing informational pamphlets, posters and key rings at gay establishments as part of the campaign. According to the Health Ministry, gay men in Brazil are 11 times more likely to contract HIV than heterosexual men (Milliken, Reuters, 6/4).
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