(WSIL) — Today is the 16th annual observance of National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.
According to Women’s Health, nearly one million people are diagnosed with HIV and 1 in 4 of them are women.
HIV and AIDS are still widespread public health problems, especially during this pandemic.
And with March being Women’s History Month, this day recognizes work to end stigma and show support for women living with the disease.
According to LeGina Crim of the Southern Illinois AIDS Coalition
women are vulnerable to infection, especially women of color.
According to AIDSVu, in 2018 the rate of black women living with HIV was 17 times higher than that of white women, especially in the Midwest and Northeast regions.
Crim says COVID-19 puts people with the disease at greater risk of illness and not being afraid to get tested.
“Remember that your health information is private and it’s HIPPA compliant. So no one will put you to shame. People will cheer you on and cheer you up if you feel you’ve been exposed to the virus. HIV and AIDS,” she said.
According to the IDPH, 1 in 5 people living with HIV in Illinois are women.
But Governor JB Pritzker is working to end it. In May 2019, he presented a five-year plan to end the HIV epidemic by 2030.
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