Entries in Baltimore (1)


Baltimore HIV Initiative to Cut Infections 25 Percent by 2015

ABC News Radio(BALTIMORE) -- Baltimore has ambitious plans for its public health sector in the next three years: By 2015, city officials plan to cut new HIV/AIDS infections by 25 percent. While public funds are limited, government leaders say they're confident that the detailed plan, which seeks to reallocate placement of intervention programs and revamp city programs, will reduce the transmission of a disease that has plagued Baltimore for decades.

The city announcement comes just in time for World AIDS Day, celebrated each year on Dec. 1.

"For the last 30 years, the HIV epidemic has been rampant in Baltimore city and we haven't managed to get out of the top 10 cities [for highest rates of HIV in the U.S.]," said Dr. Oxiris Barbot, city health commissioner for Baltimore. "We wanted to take a fresh look at what we're doing to reduce the epidemic."

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Miami has the highest HIV rate of all U.S. cities. More than 64,000 Miami residents carry the deadly virus.

Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake announced the new plan Tuesday to combat a disease that affects more than 13,000 Baltimore residents, and more than 1.1 million nationwide.

In accordance with the new plans, Baltimore city officials will extend needle exchange programs; use mobile medical services and primary care to implement HIV testing and diagnoses; and target locations such as schools, sex clubs, prisons and other areas where there may be a higher-than-average rate of unprotected sex and drug use. Particularly high-risk populations include gay and bisexual men, African American men, and those who participate in unprotected sex with many partners and intravenous drug use.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio