CDC: NE U.S. Latinos have top HIV rates

Oct. 11, 2012 at 4:14 PM
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ATLANTA, Oct. 11 (UPI) -- Latinos in the Northeast United States have the highest HIV diagnoses rates and are more likely to be infected via intravenous drug use, health official say.

The report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said, in contrast, Latinos in the South have the highest number of new diagnoses and are more likely to be infected through male-to-male sexual contact than Latinos in the Northeast.

The human immunodeficiency virus is the cause of AIDS.

However, regardless of region, male-to-male sexual contact was the primary mode of transmission among Latinos in the United States overall, the report said.

The report all found:

-- Hispanics represent approximately 16 percent of the U.S. population and account for an estimated 19 percent of people living with HIV in the United States and 20 percent of new infections.

-- The rate of new HIV infections among Latino men is almost three times that of white men, and the rate among Latinas is more than four times that of white women.

-- Gay and bi-sexual men account for the largest proportion of HIV infections among Latinos overall, but different Latino communities are impacted in different ways.

"HIV continues to pose a serious health threat to Latino communities in the United States. If we hope to end the United States epidemic, we must stem the spread of HIV among Latinos -- the nation's fastest growing ethnic population," Donna McCree, associate director for health equity at the CDC, said in a statement. "Each of us has a role to play."

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