Houston Task Force To Target Hispanic Residents For HIV Testing
The Latino HIV Task Force in Houston will offer free HIV testing as part of National HIV Testing Day on June 27, the Houston Chronicle reports. According to the Houston Department of Health and Human Services (HDHHS), Hispanics comprise 21 percent of the more than 16,000 HIV cases reported to the agency over the last 10 years and 17 percent of the nearly 26,000 AIDS cases since 1981. Porfirio Villarreal, HDHHS's public information officer and media chair for the Task Force, said that HIV prevention is challenging among Hispanic communities because of stigma and difficulties in talking openly about sex. He added, "People who are undocumented in this country do not go test because they fear they may be deported, which is wrong." The task force was established in 2002 and has brought together several local health agencies and community-based organizations that offer medical treatment or programs focused on HIV/AIDS, according to the Chronicle (Lamkahouan, Houston Chronicle, 6/22).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.