Tuesday, December 1, 2009

World AIDS Day

I have many friends who are HIV+. I have many who are not. Part of my life has been spent working in the HIV/AIDS fundraising world. It is deeply troubling to me that we have been searching for a cure for over 25 years and it has eluded us. What is more troubling is that rates of HIV infection continue to rise, partiularly among younger gay men. What are we doing wrong?
The following is an excerpt from a CDC page: "In August 2008, CDC published the first national HIV incidence (new infections) estimates using new technology and methodology that more directly measure the number of new HIV infections in the United States. The first analyses, published in the August 6, 2008 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), showed that in 2006, an estimated 56,300 new HIV infections occurred - a number that is substantially higher than the previous estimate of 40,000 annual new infections."

For more information: http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/surveillance/incidence/sote/fullscreen.htm

What can you do? Wear a condom. Play safe. Talk about sex openly and honestly with your spouse, children and loved ones. Like many diseases, it is nearly 100% preventable by individual action. Realize that at this point, though the disease is easily prevented, it is expensive to hold in remission. There is also little hope of a "cure" anytime in the future.
I try hard to stay focused on business, but in this case, I believe strongly that the issue is powerful enough that we all should take note and be held accountable for our actions. Only through concerted, willful action will we be able to conquor the disease. Thanks for listening, and end of commercial!

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