When the HIV epidemic hit in the early 80’s I was a pre-teen still in elementary going into junior high. During that time it was always in the news about how many gay White men were dying and on their death beds. Now we don’t hear about HIV in the news unless there is a celebrity who discloses their status like Magic Johnson. Over the past 10 years the epidemic has changed from gay White affluent males to Black, Brown and Yellow MSM’s and high risk heterosexuals living in poor communities where there is a high concentration of health disparities along with other social ills. Not only did the epidemic shift but the funding also started to shrink.
However, there is hope on the horizon for the tide of the epidemic to be eradicated with the new bio-medical technologies of Microbicides which can come in a gel or a ring that is inserted into the vagina or rectum for added protection from HIV and/or pregnancies,Ttreatment as Prevention when a person who is living with HIV their viral load is suppressed has 96 to 100% of not transmitting the virus to their partner and Stem Cell (cord blood) treatment that will hide the CCR5 co-receptor found on the CD4/T-Cell which the HIV virion attaches to and inserts its self into the T-Cell. Without the CCR5 co-receptor then the person can’t acquire the virus.
Hope also is combining treatment and eliminating poverty, stigma, discrimination, racism, lack of access that are the driving forces of HIV in this country when we do that then we can have an AIDS Free Generation