Yuma Sun (03.09.13)
Flor Castañon, health department HIV/AIDS medical case manager for Yuma County, Ariz., notified county residents that annual HIV/AIDS incidence in the county is still approximately 14 new cases. Once a virtual death sentence, HIV is more like a chronic disease now, according to Castañon, who stated that HIV-infected individuals can live 30 or more years with proper medical treatment and a healthy lifestyle.
Castañon reported that most of Yuma’s 211 HIV- and AIDS-infected cases are attributed to unprotected sex between men who have sex with men. Some of Yuma’s HIV incidence also result from unprotected sex between heterosexuals and needle sharing among injection drug users. Approximately half of Yuma’s HIV-infected population is Hispanic. National HIV data indicate that almost 20 percent of HIV-infected people are unaware of their infection.
Yuma County Health Department provides HIV/AIDS health education and connects underserved populations with the federally funded Ryan White Program that assists with doctors, medications, and case support.