HIV Prevention Strategies Targeted Toward Blacks Should Be Restructured, Opinion Piece States
"HIV/AIDS is a crisis among African-Americans," with blacks making up about 49% of the estimated 37,331 new cases of HIV/AIDS diagnosed in 2005, Jacqueline Fleming Hampton, director of community outreach at the NIH Center for AIDS Health Disparities Research at Meharry Medical College, writes in a Tennessean opinion piece. According to Fleming Hampton, the HIV infection rate among black men is seven times higher than it is for white men and two times as high as it is for Hispanic men. Black women represent 66% of all new HIV cases among women over age 13, Fleming Hampton adds.
HIV prevention is a "primary and cost-effective way to save lives," Fleming Hampton writes. According to Fleming Hampton, it costs $20,000 annually to treat one HIV-positive person, compared with $10 to administer an HIV test.
Fleming Hampton writes, "Traditional approaches to HIV prevention targeting African-Americans must be restructured to take into account the challenging and complex environments in which many African-Americans live, work, play and worship. These approaches must address high-risk behaviors that can be modified, such as poverty, joblessness, depression, anxiety, stigma, violence, crack/cocaine use and the revolving door of incarceration" (Fleming Hampton, Tennessean, 1/4).