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Rural Solutions, a health advocacy group in Colorado, has released a report about HIV prevention in conjunction with a conference to raise awareness about HIV in rural America, according to the Sterling Journal-Advocate.
Speakers at the conference discussed the difficulties of tracking and preventing HIV in rural Colorado.
"It's kind of this black box, nobody knows a whole lot," said Jack Westfall, associate dean of rural health at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. "It is really hidden and secret, and we just don't know about it and we don't talk about it."
An assessment on the needs of rural Colorado found that HIV prevention services are limited in the area there are significant challenges to HIV testing and education. Rural areas face obstacles such as: Limited resources, poverty, geographic and social isolation, traditional values, small town atmosphere and confidentiality.
Dreisbach said that some HIV risk factors are more common in rural areas. Condom use tends to be lower outside of the cities and people are more likely to believe their partners dont have HIV or STDs.
According to the CDC, there are 1.1 million people in the U.S. living with HIV, of which more than 468,000 with AIDS.
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