Belleville, Ill. (PRWEB) June 18, 2013
More than 1.1 million people in the U.S. ages 13 and older are living with HIV/AIDS, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Of those, nearly 20 percent don’t know they are infected. In support of National HIV Testing Day on June 27, Allsup, a nationwide provider of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) representation, the CDC and other organizations are raising awareness of the importance of HIV testing.
The CDC reports about 50,000 new HIV infections each year. Along with developing AIDS, those with HIV have increased risk for serious diseases because of damage to their immune systems. These diseases include pneumocystis pneumonia (PCP), tuberculosis and toxoplasmosis.
The CDC urges individuals to know their HIV status through screening to ensure proper treatment, maintain health and lower the risk of spreading the virus. People at risk include those having unprotected sex and using intravenous drugs. Lack of knowledge is a hazard, according to the CDC, because individuals unaware they’ve been infected are not able to take advantage of life-extending therapies. They also don’t know how to protect their partners from infection.
“Advancements in treatment mean those infected with HIV can live long, productive lives,” said Tai Venuti, manager of Strategic Alliances for Allsup. “The earlier treatment starts, the better the prognosis, and getting tested is the first step. Early detection also helps prevent infection in others. Studies show that people who are aware they are infected are more likely to take steps to protect their partners.”
The CDC urges people to spread the word leading up to National HIV Testing Day. This year’s theme is “Take the Test, Take Control.” Free, downloadable
Copyright©2012 Vocus, Inc.
All rights reserved