Teen Health 411
Teen Health 411

HIV Infection in People Over 50

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To follow up on my post about talking to your grandparents about HIV last month, I wanted to point you to the newest topic on the CDC's HIV/AIDS web page - "Persons Aged 50 and Over."

The new site suggests that the increase in the number of people aged 50 years and older living with HIV is due in part to highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), which makes it possible for people infected with HIV to live longer, and partly due to an increase in newly diagnosed infections in persons over the age of 50.

Based on data from 33 states with long-term, confidential name-based HIV reporting, the CDC estimates that in in 2005 people over the age of 50 accounted for:
  • 15% of new HIV/AIDS diagnoses and
  • 24% of the people living with HIV.
Just like in people under 50, there are ethnic disparities - the rates of HIV infection among black people over the age of 50 are 12 times higher than among whites, and 5 times higher among Hispanics, as compared to whites.

Everyone needs to understand HIV transmission and practice safer sex. If you have not talked to a grandparent yet, how about doing that now?

Resources
CDC's Persons Aged 50 and Over
HIV Wisdom for Older Women
NAHOF (National Association on HIV Over Fifty)

Photo Credit: Sully Pixil
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About the Author

Dr. Brown is a developmental psychologist specializing in adolescent health.

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