Before we even get into World AIDS day, how its celebrated, etc. Let’s start with some basics. What is AIDS? The last stage of the HIV infection when the immune system in the body is badly damaged is called AIDS. It occurs when the virus has cuased their CD4 cells to fall below 200 cells/mm3. CD4 cells are white blood cells also known as T cells. HIV not only attacks, but destroys these cells. Someone without HIV/AIDs has a CD4 count of anywhere between 500 – 1600 cells/mm3. These cells are the warriors in your body that help fight off infections.
World AIDS day is celebrated every year on December 1. The 1st day n 1988 it became the first ever global health day. Worldwide, people come together on this date, united to fight a common goal. The goal of ending HIV/AIDS stigma, illness, etc.
According to hiv.org Blacks/African Americans are disproportionately affected by HIV. The following statistics are from 2014 to 2018:
- HIV diagnoses rates overall decreased among Blacks/African Americans.
- Among all races/ethnicities, the highest rate was 39.2 for Blacks/African Americans.
- Blacks/African Americans accounted for 42% (16,055) of HIV diagnoses and 13% of the population.
World AIDS Day is important! We should recognize this day because, there are, on average 38 million people who are living with HIV/AIDS. It is a reminder to everyone that HIV/AIDS is still very much present. The needs are substantial. Raising money, spreading awareness, and fighting stigma are only a few of these needs. Know that there are several things you can do to contribute. You can dontate money, get tested, wear a red ribbon, spread awareness, etc.
Let Your World AIDS Day Light Shine!