World AIDS Day What You Should Know
World AIDS Day has been observed on December 1 every year since 1988 and serves as a reminder of the global struggle to end HIV-related stigma. It’s an opportunity to honor those we have lost, and is also a rallying cry to commit to working toward a day when HIV is no longer a public health threat. This year’s theme for World AIDS Day is “World AIDS Day 35: Remember and Commit.”
Today, reiterated by new guidance from the World Health Organization, we know that Undetectable = Unstransmittable which equals Zero Risk. Meaning, people diagnosed with HIV, who remain on proper and consistent medication and treatment to keep the HIV virus down to an undetectable level on lab tests, cannot transmit the virus and as a result, carry zero risk of spreading the virus to others.
There are numerous ways to get involved with World AIDS Day this year, by learning the facts and putting the knowledge into action. Another way to show support for those living with HIV/AIDS is by wearing the signature red ribbon on December 1.
You can learn more about World AIDS Day at www.worldaidsday.org.
- ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) is a diverse, non-partisan group of individuals committed to direct action to end the AIDS crisis.
- The American Foundation for AIDS Research (amFAR) is a leading organization dedicated to the support of HIV/AIDS research.
- Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC) offers hands-on support services in New York City and HIV/AIDS education and advocacy for hundreds to thousands nationwide.
- HIV Medicine Association is an organization of U.S.-based HIV medicine professionals
- The International AIDS Society is the world’s leading independent association of HIV professionals.
- The National Association of People with AIDS (NAPWA) advocates for the lives and dignity of all people living with HIV/AIDS, especially the more than a million Americans who live with it today.
- Office of National AIDS Policy (ONAP) emphasizes prevention through wide-ranging education initiatives and helps to coordinate the care and treatment of citizens with HIV/AIDS.
- +Life Media is a media group focused on propelling stories of people living with HIV into the mainstream.
- UNAIDS, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, is an innovative partnership that leads and inspires the world in achieving universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) Department of HIV/AIDS provides evidence-based, technical support to Member States in scaling up treatment, care and prevention services and supply of HIV commodities to enable a comprehensive and sustainable response to HIV in countries.
- Kaiser Family Foundation’s HIV resources
HIV/AIDS Fast Facts
- People living with HIV today, when on effective treatment, lead long and healthy lives and cannot transmit HIV. Treating HIV can suppress the virus to the point it is no longer detected. When HIV is undetected, it is untransmittable, the key message of the U=U campaign.
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 40% of new HIV infections are transmitted by people who don’t know they have the virus.
- HIV.gov: In 2020, people aged 13 to 34 (GenZ and Millennials) accounted for more than half (57%) of new HIV diagnoses.
- Black Americans account for more HIV diagnoses (43%), people living with HIV (42%), and the most deaths among people with HIV (44%), more than any other racial and ethnic group in the U.S. Black Americans are just 12% of the U.S. population.
- The CDC reports that the U.S. South experiences the greatest rates of HIV and lags behind in providing quality HIV prevention services and care.
- Medications like PrEP protect people who do not have HIV from contracting HIV. The CDC states that PrEP reduces the risk of getting HIV from sex by about 99% when taken as prescribed.
According to Federal Data from the National HIV/AIDS Strategy (NHAS)
- New HIV infections in the U.S. have declined in recent years, after a period of general stability. Estimated annual new HIV infections were 12% lower in 2021 compared to 2017—dropping from about 36,500 infections to about 32,100, putting us in a good starting position as we began our work to implement the Strategy.
- Overall, in 2022, 36% of the 1.2 million people in the U.S. who could benefit from PrEP were prescribed it, compared to 23% in 2019, though significant racial/ethnic and gender disparities persist.
- Nearly 90% of Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program clients receiving HIV medical care in 2022 reached viral suppression, significantly higher than the 69.5% in 2010.
- Across 55 countries, PEPFAR supports over 63 million people with HIV testing services, and nearly 19 million people with antiretroviral treatment.
- Over the course of its 20 years, PEPFAR has enabled 5.5 million babies to be born HIV-free to mothers living with HIV and trained 340,000 new healthcare workers
GLAAD’s Southern Story Bank
LGBTQ Southerners represent the vibrancy, resiliency, and beauty of the region they call home. The vast majority live in states without statewide laws protecting them from discrimination as transgender Southerners face record-high state-sponsored targeting of essential healthcare, free speech, and access to school sports and bathrooms. The South also has the highest rates of new HIV diagnoses, exacerbated and complicated by systemic and historic racism, poverty, and healthcare inequities.
LGBTQ Southerners are not solely defined by these challenges. They’re also parents, friends, siblings, small business owners, teachers, and everyday people. Here are some of their stories.
Executive Director, The Knights & Orchids Society (TKO)
Quentin was named to the TIME100 Next list in 2022, honoring emerging leaders shaping the future and defining the next generation. See how he’s applying the lessons of Civil Rights history in his hometown to the current fight for LGBTQ equality and transgender liberation.
Dee Dee Watters
Activist, Publisher of TransGriot
Houston, TX & Chicago, IL
Dee Dee is an inspirational speaker, storyteller and role model for transgender people and all who want to live in their truth. “Human rights and trans rights are the same.”
Team Lead/Lead Investigator for Transgender Programs
Research Associate-National HIV Behavioral Surveillance
New Orleans, LA
Jasmine incorporates the arts, taking a holistic approach in healthcare when servicing and educating our communities through theater, song, poetry, and other forms of human experiences that invoke positive energy, enabling connection on deep levels of emotion.
Executive Director, National Black Trans Advocacy Coalition
As a Black trans man in Texas, Carter explains how his personal journey and public mission are coming together with a simple goal: for trans people to be seen as human beings, family members, neighbors, colleagues, customers and friends.
Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director, Community Health Pier
Cedric is a living example of hope and possibility to young people in Mississippi, and for all to see that people living with HIV are living full, happy, purpose-filled lives. He delivers a message to faith leaders about erasing HIV stigma in communities across the South.
Executive Director, Game Changing Men
A grantee of the Gilead COMPASS Initiative®, Quinton and the organization he founded open new dialogue about masculinity, safety and wellness for all men, including trans men and communities of color.