T Nation

AIDS in NYC

NEW YORK (CNN) – New York City’s rate of HIV infection is about three times the national rate, according to estimates released Wednesday by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

Rapid HIV test swabs incubate at the Iris House in New York in 2007.

The agency estimates that 72 of every 100,000 New Yorkers – a total of 4,800 individuals – contracted HIV in 2006, more than triple the national rate of 23 per 100,000.

The findings are based on new lab technology and a newly derived statistical model developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The lab technology enables health officials to determine whether HIV-positive individuals contracted the virus within the past five months, and the statistical model allows researchers to then make projections about a population’s infection rate.

HIV, or the human immunodeficiency virus, is the virus that causes AIDS.

The Health Department points to the city’s demographics.

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“The populations that bear the greatest burden nationally – blacks, for example, and men who have sex with men – are highly represented in New York City,” Health Commissioner Thomas Freidan said in a written statement. “Because HIV is more prevalent within those groups, the risk of HIV infection per sexual contact is higher.”

In June, the city launched a three-year initiative to administer HIV tests to the 250,000 Bronx adults who have never been tested. The program was announced just days after release of a study finding a high rate of “unsafe sexual behavior” in the city.

Health Library
MayoClinic.com: HIV/AIDS
Freidan said the study showed that 36 percent of gay and bisexual New York men who had five or more partners in the previous year did not use condoms consistently.

“This is a core group which is at high risk for getting and spreading HIV,” Freidan said.

In July, a study of 452 men interviewed anonymously at gay bars and clubs found 39 percent of those having sex with other men had not revealed their sexual orientation to their doctors, significantly diminishing their likelihood of being tested for HIV.

What exactly are we supposed to discuss in this thread?

[quote]lixy wrote:
What exactly are we supposed to discuss in this thread?[/quote]

You can say what ever you want about it. I thought it was iinteresting so I posted it.

A major problem is that our liberal PC culture is now treating AIDS like some kind of alternative lifestyle choice rather that the outright fucking plague from Hell that it is.

[quote]belligerent wrote:
A major problem is that our liberal PC culture is now treating AIDS like some kind of alternative lifestyle choice rather that the outright fucking plague from Hell that it is. Bill Gates was an idiot to send all that money to Africa, because there is literally no hope of stopping AIDS on that continent, and all he’s doing is subsidizing the spread of the disease.[/quote]

Bill Gates’ foundation is working more on malaria than HIV infection. Malaria has a chance of being controlled. HIV, not so much.

On similar note…

“I was going to wear a condom, but I figured, 'Hey, when will I be in Haiti again”

Bad Idea Jeans

[quote]belligerent wrote:
A major problem is that our liberal PC culture is now treating AIDS like some kind of alternative lifestyle choice rather that the outright fucking plague from Hell that it is. Bill Gates was an idiot to send all that money to Africa, because there is literally no hope of stopping AIDS on that continent, and all he’s doing is subsidizing the spread of the disease.[/quote]

…WHo in the fuck treats AIDS like a lifestyle? Where in the fuck have you seen this?

Having compassion for people with a deadly illness is “liberal PC” now?

[quote]Beowolf wrote:
Having compassion for people with a deadly illness is “liberal PC” now?[/quote]

No, but acting like it was not their fault is nothing but liberal PC bullshit.

Unless you are a hemophiliac, or unlucky SOB who gets the wrong transfusion, there is no fucking way you can contract AIDS with out voluntarily ignoring precautions.

Personally, except in the very rare case, most everyone who contracts AIDS is a fucking idiot, and there is no reason whatsoever to act as if they are anything but a fucking fool.

I am speaking about North America only, if that even matters to the idiotic fucking PC police.

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

[quote]rainjack wrote:
Beowolf wrote:
Having compassion for people with a deadly illness is “liberal PC” now?

No, but acting like it was not their fault is nothing but liberal PC bullshit. [/quote]

I have not seen one person, ever, act like it is “not their fault.” This is an outlandish claim. Just who are you trying to denigrate with this bullshit? “Not their fault.” Please.

Since you’re the kind of guy who is so eager to show that he has the balls to name names, here’s your chance. Don’t back down – provide verifiable evidence.

[quote]rainjack wrote:
Beowolf wrote:
Having compassion for people with a deadly illness is “liberal PC” now?

No, but acting like it was not their fault is nothing but liberal PC bullshit.

Unless you are a hemophiliac, or unlucky SOB who gets the wrong transfusion, there is no fucking way you can contract AIDS with out voluntarily ignoring precautions.

Personally, except in the very rare case, most everyone who contracts AIDS is a fucking idiot, and there is no reason whatsoever to act as if they are anything but a fucking fool.

I am speaking about North America only, if that even matters to the idiotic fucking PC police. [/quote]

Who in the hell claims it wasn’t there fault? “Yeah, one of my last few random partners FORCED me to not use a condom.” Oh yeah. People totally say that all the time.

[quote]Beowolf wrote:

Having compassion for people with a deadly illness is “liberal PC” now?[/quote]

In this statement you are saying that it isn’t there fault for contracting the disease.

If a person is stupid enough to not take the necessary precautions for contracting the virus, then why do you have compassion for them? AID’s is a completely avoidable virus if you aren’t a fucking idiot (In nearly all cases).

One can believe that people have brought doom upon themselves by their own actions. And, one can believe those same people should feel shame and regret for carrying on with such actions. Yet, we can still feel and show compassion for them.

[quote]Sloth wrote:
One can believe that people have brought doom upon themselves by their own actions. And, one can believe those same people should feel shame and regret for carrying on with such actions. Yet, we can still feel and show compassion for them.[/quote]

Not sure where I’m going with this but-

If you show compassion for them, wouldn’t that be reinforcing a (bad) choice? Kind of like how when you are trying to teach a dog a trick, you will show him compassion when he does it right. Good analogy, bad analogy, who knows.

[quote]RebornTN wrote:
Beowolf wrote:

Having compassion for people with a deadly illness is “liberal PC” now?

In this statement you are saying that it isn’t there fault for contracting the disease.

If a person is stupid enough to not take the necessary precautions for contracting the virus, then why do you have compassion for them? AID’s is a completely avoidable virus if you aren’t a fucking idiot (In nearly all cases).[/quote]

…Because obviously EVERY single AIDS victim had a whole bunch of unprotected sex. Not one just amde one mistake and ended up paying with there life. Just like how only kids who drink all the time die of alcohol poisoning.

Look, just because SOME of them, even a LOT of them are fuck ups, doesn’t mean they don’t deserve some compassion. You were never a dumb kid? Really? You can’t relate to a teen making a bad decision at all?!?!?

[quote]Sloth wrote:
One can believe that people have brought doom upon themselves by their own actions. And, one can believe those same people should feel shame and regret for carrying on with such actions. Yet, we can still feel and show compassion for them.[/quote]

EXACTLY.

Sloth++

Since there seems to be such a clear conviction that people who contract HIV are to blame for it, let’s test the awareness of people in this thread with regards to knowledge on prevention.

The CDC recommends every sexually active person to stick with one partner and to know their HIV statuses. Do you? Who here has ever been tested?

What about usage of condoms/safer sex in stable relationships - do you trust your partner enough not to have had an affair (or having been exposed to any of the other risk factors) at any point in the past, however long ago?

Now for all the serial monogamists here (that means all the sexually active young men and women who roam this site), the same questions apply, but with the addition of:

  • get a history of risk factors (partners, drug use, STDs) for every partner you have sex with
  • always use a condom
  • get a vaccination against Hepathitis B
  • get a HIV test every time you have a health checkup
    http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/basic/index.htm

The drug users among us (steroids anyone?) have an even longer list of recommendations to fulfil. But let’s leave this out and go for the standard a couple of partners in adolescence and two or three long-term relationships later in life types:

If you can answer all the above with a resounding ‘yes’, you’re indeed doing everything you can to avoid infection, short from being completely abstinent forever.

Now for the real world: we lucky few who hang around the CDC website and discuss AIDS risk behaviour openly in our every day life (and on T-Nation) who practice the above are so far from the norm - and herein lies the crux:

people, especially underprivileged young and uninformed (resistance against sex education anyone?) are at risk.

The CDC identifies several factors which seem to have a detrimental effect on preventive behaviour (we’re not talking direct risk factors), mostly having to do with being a minority, various cultural factors and being poor:

'[…] Race and ethnicity are not, by themselves, risk factors for HIV infection. But studies show that African Americans and Hispanics/Latinos are more likely than their white counterparts to face multiple challenges associated with risk for HIV infection.

These challenges include high rates of sexually transmitted diseases, which can facilitate HIV transmission; substance abuse, which may increase the risk for HIV infection through sexual or drug-related transmission; and socioeconomic factors, such as limited access to high-quality health care.

Studies have also suggested that poverty may place African American women at increased risk because of the power imbalance created by financial dependence on men. Among MSM of minority races/ethnicities, cultural barriers that may impede the acknowledgment of risk behaviors and the ability to access prevention services may result in increased risk.

For Hispanics/Latinos, language barriers may also affect the quality of care. Additionally, because many Hispanics/Latinos or their parents have emigrated from diverse countries or regions, there is no single culture for persons of Spanish origin in the United States.

Research shows that Hispanics/Latinos born in different countries have different behavioral risk factors for HIV.[…]’
http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/surveillance/pdf/us_media.pdf

So, in a nutshell - it’s a bit more complicated. I think it’s time that we stop blaming people and start focusing on education, prevention and integration.

Makkun

PS: Oh yes, just before we get into this spiral of doom again - the CDC does nowhere in their materials discourage Men having sex with Men (MSM) not to have sex with each other; they indeed recommend in some of their materials to strengthen LGBT scenes and networks as a measure to bring the prevention message home.

[quote]makkun wrote:
Since there seems to be such a clear conviction that people who contract HIV are to blame for it, let’s test the awareness of people in this thread with regards to knowledge on prevention.

The CDC recommends every sexually active person to stick with one partner and to know their HIV statuses. Do you? Who here has ever been tested?

What about usage of condoms/safer sex in stable relationships - do you trust your partner enough not to have had an affair (or having been exposed to any of the other risk factors) at any point in the past, however long ago?

Now for all the serial monogamists here (that means all the sexually active young men and women who roam this site), the same questions apply, but with the addition of:

  • get a history of risk factors (partners, drug use, STDs) for every partner you have sex with
  • always use a condom
  • get a vaccination against Hepathitis B
  • get a HIV test every time you have a health checkup
    http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/basic/index.htm

The drug users among us (steroids anyone?) have an even longer list of recommendations to fulfil. But let’s leave this out and go for the standard a couple of partners in adolescence and two or three long-term relationships later in life types:

If you can answer all the above with a resounding ‘yes’, you’re indeed doing everything you can to avoid infection, short from being completely abstinent forever.

Now for the real world: we lucky few who hang around the CDC website and discuss AIDS risk behaviour openly in our every day life (and on T-Nation) who practice the above are so far from the norm - and herein lies the crux: people, especially underprivileged young and uninformed (resistance against sex education anyone?) are at risk.

The CDC identifies several factors which seem to have a detrimental effect on preventive behaviour (we’re not talking direct risk factors), mostly having to do with being a minority, various cultural factors and being poor:
'[…] Race and ethnicity are not, by themselves, risk factors for HIV infection. But studies show that African Americans and Hispanics/Latinos are more likely than their white counterparts to face multiple challenges associated with risk for HIV infection.

These challenges include high rates of sexually transmitted diseases, which can facilitate HIV transmission; substance abuse, which may increase the risk for HIV infection through sexual or drug-related transmission; and socioeconomic factors, such as limited access to high-quality health care.

Studies have also suggested that poverty may place African American women at increased risk because of the power imbalance created by financial dependence on men. Among MSM of minority races/ethnicities, cultural barriers that may impede the acknowledgment of risk behaviors and the ability to access prevention services may result in increased risk.

For Hispanics/Latinos, language barriers may also affect the quality of care. Additionally, because many Hispanics/Latinos or their parents have emigrated from diverse countries or regions, there is no single culture for persons of Spanish origin in the United States.

Research shows that Hispanics/Latinos born in different countries have different behavioral risk factors for HIV.[…]’
http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/topics/surveillance/pdf/us_media.pdf

So, in a nutshell - it’s a bit more complicated. I think it’s time that we stop blaming people and start focusing on education, prevention and integration.

Makkun

PS: Oh yes, just before we get into this spiral of doom again - the CDC does nowhere in their materials discourage Men having sex with Men (MSM) not to have sex with each other; they indeed recommend in some of their materials to strengthen LGBT scenes and networks as a measure to bring the prevention message home.[/quote]

Maybe the word idiot is a little harsh but NOT getting AIDS is actually easy. Don’t use drugs, find 1 sex partner, and both of you get tested and then only have sex with that one partner. Simple aint it?

[quote]jawara wrote:

Maybe the word idiot is a little harsh but NOT getting AIDS is actually easy. Don’t use drugs, find 1 sex partner, and both of you get tested and then only have sex with that one partner. Simple aint it?[/quote]

It does sound so simple, doesn’t it? And if we would all run our lives based on the timely availability of ideal information and act always according to our long-term interests (which we would need to know in advance), we may possibly end up achieving this.

Makkun

Nope, the behavior does have to be socially stigmatized.

You guys misunderstand. When I say that our society treats AIDS like an alternative lifestyle choice, I mean that most discussion of the subject revolves around tolerance, acceptance, and the ideas that people infected with AIDS can live normal lives and that we all have a moral responsibility to shoulder the burden of caring for them.

I’m not saying that people with AIDS are idiots because they had unprotected sex. Sex drive is biological and it can be an extraordinarily fucking difficult task to modify a person’s sexual habits. Arousal overrides rationality and even smart people can be prone to mess up when they’re drunk and horny. How many of you have never had unproteted sex?