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United Press International
HIV/AIDS deaths drop among NYC blacks

February 8, 2012
United Press International - February 8, 2012

NEW YORK, Feb. 8 (UPI) -- New York City logged a 41 percent drop in deaths among blacks living with HIV/AIDS from 2001 to 2010, health department officials said.

Despite this progress, black New Yorkers -- 25 percent of the city's population -- disproportionately accounted for almost half of all new human immunodeficiency virus diagnoses in 2010, a proportion that has remained almost unchanged the past five years, officials said.

Dr. Thomas Farley, New York City health commissioner, said blacks were more likely than all other racial/ethnic groups in the city to have had a test in the past 12 months for the virus that leads to AIDS.

To commemorate the 12th annual National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, the health department reminds New Yorkers who do not know their HIV status to get tested, take the necessary precautions to stay negative and protect their partners, and get into treatment if the HIV test if positive.

"After more than 30 years of battling HIV, it's still a disease that disproportionately impacts our vulnerable community members," Farley said in a statement. "With our new treatment recommendations released in December, I am more optimistic than ever that we can continue to drive down rates of infection and we may see the end of this epidemic in my lifetime. To that end, we cannot let up on our prevention efforts. Everyone should get tested, and if you're positive, get into treatment and stay in treatment."