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PLANNED PARENTHOOD TO OFFER LOW-COST AND FREE HIV TESTING IN RECOGNITION OF NATIONAL LATINO AIDS AWARENESS DAY
New York, NY — On October 15, Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) will join more than 1,000 organizations in more than 300 cities across the nation to promote and provide HIV testing and information in recognition of National Latino AIDS Awareness Day (NLAAD). NLAAD is a nationwide community mobilization campaign seeking to raise the visibility of HIV/AIDS within the Latino community. Planned Parenthood affiliates across the country generally offer low-cost or free HIV testing, as well as educational information. For NLAAD, more than a dozen affiliates will put a special focus on raising awareness in the Latino community and 10,000 condoms with HIV/AIDS information printed on their labels will be given away.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), HIV/AIDS is the number-four killer of Latinos aged 35 to 44 in the United States. While Latinos represent 15 percent of the U.S. population, they account for 16 percent of all AIDS cases since the beginning of the epidemic and 19 percent of all people in the U.S. living with AIDS.
“Clearly, more needs to be done,” said Cecile Richards, PPFA president. “What’s most troubling is that despite advances in treatment, Latinos are not experiencing the same declines in HIV infection as other groups. We need to refocus our efforts and raise awareness in the Latino community about the danger of contracting HIV/AIDS and the resources available at Planned Parenthood to prevent infection.”
National Latino AIDS Awareness Day was initiated in 2003 by the Latino Commission on AIDS and the Hispanic Federation. Currently, NLAAD is a day to celebrate Latinos’ rich collective heritage during Hispanic Heritage month as well as an opportunity to remind Latino communities across the country that the epidemic continues to threaten Latino health and lives.
NLAAD raises awareness of the devastation HIV/AIDS has had on the Latino community and emphasizes the power of prevention by offering free and low-cost testing, condoms, screenings and information at health fairs, cultural and community events, and through the media and clergy. Latinos are least likely to have health insurance, which would allow them to get the testing and services they need to keep them healthy.
For more information on the HIV/AIDS testing and treatment programs at a Planned Parenthood near you, log onto our website: http://www.plannedparenthood.org/.
Planned Parenthood Federation of America is the nation's leading sexual and reproductive health care advocate and provider. We believe that everyone has the right to choose when or whether to have a child, and that every child should be wanted and loved. Planned Parenthood affiliates operate more than 880 health centers nationwide, providing medical services and sexuality education for millions of women, men, and teenagers each year. We also work with allies worldwide to ensure that all women and men have the right and the means to meet their sexual and reproductive health care needs.