Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Post-Debate Background Information on Domestic AIDS Epidemic

Woohoo! AIDS Alliance for Children, Youth & Families is johnny-on-the-spot for getting this press release out so quickly. It provides some context for Ifill's AIDS question, gives the media some additional aspects of the story, and helps keep the issue alive. Way to go!

Contact: Mark Del Monte of the AIDS Alliance for Children, Youth & Families . . .

WASHINGTON, Oct. 5 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Tonight, Vice President Cheney and Senator John Edwards were asked about the domestic AIDS epidemic. Gwenn Ifill, cited a statistic on the HIV infection rates of African-American women with HIV/AIDS. Vice President Cheney stated he was unaware of the statistic.

The following facts are background information:

-- According to the CDC, African American women represent a grossly disproportionate percentage of new HIV infections among women. In 2002, African American women made up 64 percent of reported new HIV infections, Hispanic women made up about 17 percent, and white women made up 17 percent.

-- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention young women account for 58 percent of new HIV cases among people ages 13 to 19. Furthermore, these young women are largely racial and ethnic minorities. Young African American and Hispanic women account for 75 percent of HIV infections among women ages 13 to 24.

-- While the Bush Administration has increased funding for global AIDS programs to $2.8 billion this year, the Administration has proposed no increases in domestic HIV/AIDS prevention programs. These programs have remained level funded over the past 4 years at $700 million per year.

-- The Bush Administration has requested no new funding for the HIV/AIDS care programs in the Ryan White CARE Act the past 4 years while funding minimal and inadequate increases for AIDS drugs. One program that targets African American women and their families, Title IV of the CARE Act, has remained level funded at $73.5 million despite double digit increases in patients served each year.

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