June 27th Is National HIV Testing Day

June 27th is National HIV Testing Day (NHTD), a day dedicated to encouraging people to get tested for HIV and AIDS and getting individuals linked with the right resources for treatment if they test positive. National HIV Testing Day (NHTD) was first observed on June 27, 1995. The 2018 theme is “Doing It My Way, Testing for HIV.”

According to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, about 1.1 million people in the United States have HIV, and 1 in 7 of them don’t know it. Though HIV diagnoses among women have declined in recent years, more than 7,000 women received an HIV diagnosis in 2016.

Getting tested is the first step. Photo Courtesy of Rocket Science.

Black/African Americana women are disproportionately affected by HIV, compared with women of other races/ethnicities. Of the total number of women living with diagnosed HIV at the end of 2015, 59% (137,998) were African American, 19% (43,086) were Hispanic/Latina, and 17% (38,992) were white.

For individuals living with undiagnosed HIV, testing is the first step in maintaining a healthy life. The CDC recommends that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 get tested for HIV at least once as part of routine health care and those at high risk get tested at least once a year. Knowing your HIV status gives you powerful information to help keep you and your partner healthy.

Know the facts:

How many new HIV infections are there each year in the United States? 

In 2015, there were an estimated 38,500 new HIV infections—down from 41,800 in 2010. Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men bear the greatest burden by risk group, representing an estimated 26,200 of these new HIV infections.

How many people are diagnosed with HIV each year in the United States? 

In 2016, 39,782 people received an HIV diagnosis. The annual number of new diagnoses declined by 5% from 2011 to 2015.

Do people still die from HIV? 

Yes. From 1987 (the first year HIV was listed as a cause of death on death certificates) through 2015, 507,351 people died from HIV disease. In 2015, 6,465 people died from HIV disease. HIV remains a significant cause of death for certain populations. In 2015, it was the 9th leading cause of death for those aged 25 to 34 and 9th for those aged 35 to 44.


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