Statement by Secretary of HHS Tommy G. Thompson Regarding National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness and Information Day
February 7th is National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness & Information Day. This is a time to strengthen our commitment and to remember all the lives lost to this devastating global epidemic. Approximately 900,000 Americans are living with HIV/AIDS, and some 40,000 are newly infected with HIV every year. A disproportionate number of those are from communities of color.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 886,575 AIDS cases have been reported since the beginning of the epidemic in 1981 through December 2002. Of these, black individuals accounted for 52.3 percent of AIDS-related deaths and 50.2 percent of AIDS cases, even though African Americans make up only 12 percent of the population. In 2002, HIV/AIDS was one of the top three leading causes of death for Black women and men ages 25¿44.
These numbers are not just statistics¿they represent real people.
In recognition of National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness & Information Day, the Department of Health and Human Services has launched this comprehensive National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness & Information Day Web site, which provides the latest information on prevention, testing, treatment, and vaccine research.
If you are looking for a testing location, planning a local event, trying to craft public-awareness messages, want to work with your local media, or need educational materials such as posters, public service announcements, or fact sheets, you will find resources and answers to many of your questions here.
NBHAAD was created by the Community Capacity Building Coalition, a group composed of national organizations from across the country funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. To learn about the coalition, visit the History page at http://www.omhrc.gov/blackaidsday/hist.html.