Today is World AIDS Day, a day where people around the world come together to raise awareness about the devestation caused by the global AIDS epidemic. While I know of no close friends or family that suffer from the disease, I believe it's still important for all of us to know our status and encourage others to get tested, especially in the black community, where 1 in 22 people are expected to contract the disease in their lifetime, according to the CDC.
Prevention can not only save lives, but money as well. According to a Black Voices article, a study by the CDC and John Hopkins University concluded that "for every HIV infection prevented, $355,000 is saved in the costs of providing lifelong HIV care and treatment. The study concluded that an investment of $4.5 billion in HIV prevention over 10 years would save $104 billion in medical costs."
While the number of worldwide HIV cases has dropped 20 percent in the last decade, and medical breakthroughs--such as the invention a daily pill that can reduce the risk of infection among gay and bisexual men--have taken place, AIDS is still far from over.
Ways to Get Involved:
1. GET TESTED. Find a testing location near you here.
2. Encourage friends and family to get tested.
3.Educated youself and others about AIDS and other STDs.