The "Project Wave" awareness campaign focuses on the importance of knowing one's HIV status and getting tested. The campaign features television promotions with national celebrities, including Alicia Keys.
The initiatives announced today build on the public awareness efforts now underway in New York. The Department is currently running a prevention campaign called "HIV Stops with Me." This social marketing campaign uses community role models to promote the importance of people with HIV taking precautions to prevent transmitting the virus to others. This prevention campaign includes the use of bus and subway advertisements in New York City and Buffalo.
New York State has some of the strongest confidentiality protections in place for HIV in the nation. "No one should be afraid to get tested for HIV," Dr. Novello said. "Remember, this virus knows no racial, ethnic, age or gender boundaries. It is what you do, not who you are, that puts you at risk for HIV."
Individuals who wish to get tested may choose to do so anonymously or confidentially. With anonymous testing, a person does not provide his or her name, but instead receives an identifying number. Anonymous testing is available through many local health departments and community-based sites throughout the state. Confidential testing is also available in which patients provide their names to health care providers.
HIV testing is especially important for pregnant women, because medicine is available that can reduce the risk of maternal/child HIV transmission. Mothers who know they are HIV positive also will be advised against breast-feeding.
Under the Governor's leadership, New York has achieved a dramatic 78 percent decline in the number of newborns statewide who are infected with HIV. The results are derived from a recent State Health Department study of infants born between 1997 and 2002. In addition, New Y
Source:New York State Department Of Health