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CDC official calls for action to tackle HIV epidemic among African Americans

Category: HIV

With the African American community bearing the brunt of the HIV epidemic, one official from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is saying more needs to be done to tackle the problem, both by members of the community and public health groups.

Kevin Fenton, the director of the National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention, issued a statement in which he pointed out that many African Americans lack healthcare resources and access to preventative measures like STD testing. Improving access may help fight the problem.

At the same time, individuals need to take responsibility for their own sexual behavior and start making smarter choices in terms of the partners they choose. Combined with public health initiatives, this could lead to a significant drop in HIV rates before the problem gets any worse.

"The harsh reality is that today, even in the face of great hope and promise, African American communities continue to be devastated by HIV," Fenton said. "Although only 14 percent of the U.S. population, African Americans account for almost half of those living and dying with HIV and AIDS in this country."

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