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HIV & AIDS Health Center

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Blacks Lead in U.S. HIV/AIDS Diagnoses

Blacks Continue to Account for More Than Half of New HIV/AIDS Cases
WebMD Health News
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

March 8, 2007 -- Blacks continue to account for more than half of all new HIV/AIDS diagnoses in the United States -- more than any other racial or ethnic group, the CDC reports.

The CDC based its report on statistics coming from 33 states with confidential HIV testing programs.

According to those statistics, blacks accounted for 51% of new HIV/AIDS diagnoses from 2001 to 2005 in the states involved, according to the CDC. That's despite the fact that blacks made up only 13% of those states' populations.

The CDC data included people who tested positive for HIV (the virus that causes AIDS), whether or not they had developed AIDS.

The information is reported in the March 9 Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report from the CDC. "Blacks remain disproportionately affected by high rates of HIV/AIDS," the CDC states in the report.

About 127 per 100,000 black men and 61 per 100,000 black women in the reporting states were diagnosed with HIV or AIDS in 2005, according to the CDC.

That's about seven times higher than the rate for white men and 21 times higher than the rate for white women.

Black men most commonly contracted HIV through sexual contact with other men.

For black women, high-risk sex was the most common means of HIV transmission, according to the CDC.

Nearly a year ago, the CDC reported similar results for the same 33 states from 2001 to 2004. The new data show the trend didn't change in 2005.

The CDC's statistics don't include some areas with historically high AIDS levels, including California, Illinois, and Washington, D.C. But its findings are similar to nationwide AIDS studies, says the CDC.

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