In a startling trend that the administration is trying to reverse with a new PR campaign, HIV infection in gay and bisexual black men age 13-24 is more than twice that of young whites and Latinos, according to a new federal report.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's latest figures show that 4,800 young blacks were infected with HIV in 2010. It was under 2,000 each for young whites and Latinos.
What's more, blacks of all ages nearly equalled the HIV rate of whites in the newly-released 2010 statistics despite whites outnumbering blacks in the population 77 percent to 13 percent. CDC said that there were 10,600 new HIV infections among African American gay and bisexual men compared to 11,200 for whites and 6,700 for Hispanics.
It gets worse when those diagnosed for AIDS and HIV are accounted for, said the CDC Report. In 2012:
• Blacks accounted for the largest estimated number and percentage of diagnoses of HIV infection (11,957, 39 percent), followed by whites (10,069, 33 percent), and Hispanics/Latinos (7,057, 23 percent).
• Among gay and bisexual men in 2012, African Americans accounted for the highest estimated number and percentage of persons with diagnosed HIV infection ever classified as stage 3 (AIDS) (6,010, 40 percent), followed by whites (4,734, 32 percent) and Hispanics/ Latinos (3,289, 22 percent).
One reason CDC cited for the high levels of black HIV infection: lack of condom use for sex.
"Gay and bisexual men in 19 U.S.cities and the District of Columbia showed a 19 percent increase in self-reported sex without condoms in HIV-positive African American gay and bisexual men—from 47 percent in 2005 to 56 percent in 2011," said CDC.
The alarming figures were included in a release promoting a new Health and Human Services Department media campaign to warn gay black males about HIV and AIDS.
The department calls the campaign "Positive Spin," and it features the personal experiences of several HIV-positive, gay black men who have beaten the virus.
The CDC said that there are an estimated 451,656 gay and bisexual men living with diagnosed HIV infection, 137,228 were African Americans, 202,484 whites, and 90,796 Latinos.Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.