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HIV Awareness

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HIV Vaccine Awareness Day — May 18th

Today is HIV Vaccine Awareness Day (HVAD). This annual observance is a day to recognize and thank the thousands of volunteers, community members, health professionals, and scientists who are working together to find a safe and effective HIV vaccine. It is also a day to educate our communities about the importance of preventive HIV vaccine research.

Why is there a need for a vaccine to prevent HIV/AIDS?
Data from countries with ongoing HIV/AIDS prevention and/or treatment and care programs demonstrate that these initiatives alone are not enough to end the global epidemic. What’s more, we know from history that no major viral epidemic has been defeated without a vaccine.

Why is it important to learn more about HIV vaccine research?
HIV/AIDS is one of the most serious health threats of our time – especially for people of color. One in every two people living with HIV in the U.S. is Black. And that doesn’t include those who may be infected and don’t know it. Additionally, more than 200,000 Latinos in the U.S. and Puerto Rico are currently living with HIV/AIDS. In fact, Latinos account for the majority of diagnosed AIDS cases within one year of testing positive for HIV.

Finding a vaccine is our best hope for preventing the spread of the disease. However, unless more people of color begin to support vaccine research, an AIDS vaccine may never be found. If we don’t see ourselves as part of the solution, the AIDS epidemic is only going to get worse.

It’s time for everyone – especially African Americans and Latinos – to come together and end the AIDS epidemic once and for all. You can play a very important role in helping to stop the spread of HIV in your community by simply educating yourself and others about HIV vaccine research.

An online tutorial called “Introduction to AIDS Vaccines” is a great place to start learning about it. So please take a few minutes to view the tutorial here: www.nmac.org/vt/en

Get educated about AIDS vaccines and pass the knowledge you gain along to others. Thank you for helping to stop AIDS.

To read NMAC’s Spring 2011 HIV Vaccine Research Newsletter, click here »

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