2014 marks the 33rd anniversary of the HIV epidemic, the virus that causes AIDS. HIV is most commonly spread through unprotected sex, sharing of needles with an HIV-infected person, or transmission from an infected mother to her baby.
Many strides have been made in the fight against HIV, especially in the area of medical treatment. HIV is no longer the death sentence it once was and has become, for many, a chronic disease they must live with. If detected early while the viral load is at minimal levels, it is less likely that the disease will develop into full blown AIDS. That’s why it’s important for people to know their HIV status, be diagnosed early and receive medications to help ensure the best health outcomes. As many as 1 in 6 people currently infected with HIV don’t even know it, according to statistics from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
La Paz County Health Department can help in the HIV epidemic by providing free oral tests, counseling and physician referrals. For more information visit www.lpchd.com or call 928-669-1100.