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Radical Self CareSex & Gender

black women are experiencing higher rates of hiv

May 13, 2019
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Despite a 21-percent decrease in HIV diagnosis between 2010 and 2016, Black women continue to be diagnosed with HIV at disproportionately higher rates than white and Hispanic/Latinx women. According to seven years worth of data measuring the disparity between these groups (called the population attributable proportion, or PAP) if HIV diagnosis rates were the same amongst Black and white women, we would have seen a 70-percent lower diagnosis rate in 2016. Meaning that 93 percent of infections amongst Black women would never have occurred in the first place.

What does this suggest? According to researchers, they believe the root cause of this disparity is the lack of HIV prevention and education amongst heterosexual Black men and women. A number of challenges contribute to the absence of prevention, like higher rates of poverty, lack of healthcare access, smaller sexual networks, and lack of HIV status awareness, and of course the stigmatization of having a positive status.

In short: when you know better, you do better. And when you have more resources you’re better able to survive and then thrive.