New CDC report shows higher new HIV infection rates and disparities for Black, Latino men

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Despite advances in medicine and awareness of HIV, the disease continues to affect gay and bisexual men more severely than are Latinos and Blacks.

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The HIV infection rate among gay and bisexual Latino men increased from 6,800 new cases in 2010 to 7,900 new cases in 2019. Meanwhile, the number of new cases for gay and bisexual black men fell from just 9,000 in 2010 to 8,900 in 2019. till Vital Symptoms Report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Meanwhile gay and bisexual white men experienced a decrease in the rate of new HIV cases from 7,500 in 2010 to 5,100 in 2019.

The report examines the existing health disparities in HIV prevention, diagnosis and treatment between gay and bisexual men, who accounted for 66% of new HIV infections in 2019.

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CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Valensky said during a media briefing, “In 1986, the first report released showed a disparity between black and Latino gay and bisexual men with HIV, and the Vital Signs report continues to prove this today. that it still exists.” ,

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What challenges do black and Latino men face?

Valensky said the report shows that despite overall progress, the HIV epidemic among gay and bisexual men continued. What are the factors in this? High levels of stigma and unequal treatment and resources in these communities.

“Racism is at the root of health inequalities,” Valensky said.

According to the report, about 20% of Latino men who are gay and bisexual are unaware of their HIV status, 17% of black men who are gay and bisexual and 10% of white men who are gay and bisexual.

According to the report, in 2017 only 27% of black and African American, 31% Latino, and 42% of white gay and bisexual men used medication to prevent HIV, known as PrEP.

Meanwhile, in 2019, 62% of black and 67% of Latino men living with HIV were virally suppressed, compared to 74% of white men. Viral suppression is defined by the CDC as having fewer than 200 copies of HIV per milliliter of blood, which keeps the immune system working and preventing disease.

All of these factors, combined with health inequalities and dwindling resources, have linked HIV infection rates in the Black and Latino gay and bisexual mean.

What is CDC promising to do?

Demetre Daskalakis, director of the CDC’s Division of HIV Prevention, said the agency plans to implement programs to deliver HIV self-testing kits to people who do not have access to in-person testing services.

Daskalakis said they plan to make PrEP more available, especially to black and African American and Latino communities. CDC will also adapt Ryan White Program Where comprehensive care and other support services are provided through local partner collaboration, community training, data and more.

The agency will also develop a “status-neutral approach” to help men receive HIV services, regardless of status. Daskalakis said the CDC pledges to understand the causes of inequality as well as systemic racism, stigma, discrimination, homosexuality and unequal access to prevention services.

“Our first step is to recognize that inequalities are not inevitable and that we have a decade to build on the HIV epidemic and the opportunity to erase inequalities,” Daskalakis said.

Follow Gabriella Miranda on Twitter: @itsgabbymiranda

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