VALDOSTA, Ga. – Lowndes County is among three South Georgia counties with the highest rates of HIV diagnosis in the state, according to a recent report from Health Testing Centers.
Tift, Lowndes and Colquitt are among the group of Georgia counties with the highest rates of HIV, according to a new study released by Health Testing Centers, a nationwide network of health screening centers, based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla, according to a report from Tifton Gazette.
Meanwhile, HIV rates remain extreme in Georgia, specifically among minorities.
The state ranks the highest in new diagnoses in the U.S. and third highest in HIV risk, according to a new study released by Health Testing Centers, a nationwide network of health screening centers, behind Ohio and Nevada. The South leads all regions in highest risk.
The state ranks the highest in new diagnoses in the U.S. and third highest in HIV risk behind Ohio and Nevada, according to a new study released by Health Testing Centers, based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
African-Americans and Latinos far exceed the rates of diagnosis for all racial and ethnic groups. In Georgia, African-Americans show wide disparities in HIV diagnosis; in 2016, 68.5% of all individuals in Georgia living with HIV were black, according to data from AIDSVu, an online mapping tool maintained by Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2017, black, gay and bisexual men accounted for 26% of new HIV diagnoses nationwide. In Georgia in 2016, more than 77 percent of males living with HIV had it transmitted to them through same-gender sexual contact.
The South Health District of the department of public health is tapping into many different community resources to provide HIV outreach and prevention. The district serves residents in 10 counties including some with the highest HIV rates and most diverse communities. The district is spreading outreach to churches and even migrant worker camps.
Religious and cultural stigmas surrounding HIV diagnosis remain a leading factor in not seeking diagnosis and lack of prevention, which leads to a higher rate of death. In 2016, there were 772 deaths of individuals with HIV.