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Latest CDC Report on HIV Incidence Grossly Excludes Hispanics in 2006, the Fastest Growing Ethnic Population in the United States and its Territories
Date:8/4/2008

MEXICO CITY, Aug. 4 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In an apparent reversal of CDC's January 2008 decision to revise the number of new Hispanic HIV/AIDS diagnoses based on the inclusion of Puerto Ricans as Hispanics, the latest CDC report released in August 2008, entitled "Estimation of HIV Incidence in the United States", again failed to include Puerto Ricans in the AIDS incidence among Hispanics, thereby grossly undercounting the diagnosis rates among Hispanics. This conscious undercounting has a direct impact on the allocation of funding and resources brought to bear on the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the Hispanic community, as well as creating confusion regarding the success or failure of prevention efforts.

CDC's January 2008 decision to revise the number of new Hispanic HIV/AIDS diagnoses to include Puerto Rican Hispanics diagnosed with AIDS in 2006, dramatically raised the total HIV/AIDS diagnoses rates for Hispanics from 17.3% to 22%, demonstrating, for the first time, that Puerto Rico alone accounted for 20% of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in 2006 among Hispanics in the country. This decision was a strong step forward in reflecting the numbers of Latinos impacted.

"The decision to exclude Puerto Ricans from the Hispanic incidence analysis is perplexing. The CDC made a positive step forward in its original decision to include Hispanics, but has subsequently taken two steps back by again excluding Puerto Ricans from the Hispanic incidence rates. We will never have accurate estimate of HIV incidence in the Hispanic community if this discrimination continues", said Dennis deLeon, President of the Latino Commission on AIDS.

"We call on everyone to mobilize, demand respect, and call for recognition from CDC of the health crisis that HIV/AIDS represents in our Latino\Hispanic communities in the United States, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands", stated Guillermo Chacon, Vice President of the Latino Commission on AIDS. "We will not allow our experience of the epidemic to be invisible. Our health crisis is real. We want an accurate picture of the impact of HIV/AIDS now," concludes Chacon.

Dennis de Leon & Guillermo Chacon will be available to the media during the

International AIDS Conference, August 1st thru the 8th, 2008

ABOUT THE LATINO COMMISSION ON AIDS

The Latino Commission on AIDS is a nonprofit membership organization founded in 1990 dedicated to fighting the spread of HIV/AIDS in the Latino/Hispanic communities. The Commission is the leading national Latino AIDS organization coordinating National Latino AIDS Awareness Day and other prevention and advocacy programs in more than 40 States, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. For more information visit: http://www.latinoaids.org or http://www.nlaad.org. UNIDOS PODEMOS / UNITED WE CAN


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SOURCE Latino Commission on AIDS
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