|Ken Shirriff -> AIDS theories -> Highest risk group|
The highest rate of heterosexual transmission of AIDS occurs in people over 50
Confronted with the fact that young women are now the fastest-growing category of the AIDS population, safe-sex parties are gaining popularity in low-income communities across the nation.
Gebbie predicted that the ads would be attacked by those who feel abstinence should be the focus of the campaign, but she notes that the target audience of the ads are those in the 18- to 25-year-old age category--the group at the highest risk for HIV infection.
Health officials have failed to focus on homosexuals and intravenous drug users--the two groups at highest risk for AIDS infection--in their prevention efforts, contends John Gagnon, a professor of sociology at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.
The epidemic began in the United States in the early 1980s mainly among gay and bisexual men, but the rate of new HIV infections is now highest among heterosexual IV-drug users and their sexual partners, who are disproportionately minorities.
The Centers for Disease Control reports that every year 2.5 million American teenagers contract STDs. This suggests that one in four sexually active adolescents becomes infected--the highest rate of STD transmission for any age group, the Children's Aid Society estimated in 1991.
According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of AIDS cases reported in 1993 increased most rapidly among heterosexuals--especially young people and black and Hispanic women. Cases resulting from heterosexual contact skyrocketed 130 percent, from 4,045 in 1992 to 9,288 last year, the federal health agency reported. The increase in AIDS was also greater among women than among men, and higher among blacks and Hispanics than among whites. The largest increases, however, occurred among teenagers and young adults--primarily through heterosexual transmission. Heterosexuals at highest risk were those with several lovers who were infected with HIV or other sexually transmitted diseases, or were intravenous drug users.
Young women worldwide have the highest rate of HIV transmission, according to a report released Wednesday by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
In 1991, the Centers for Disease Control reported that prisons had the highest incidence of HIV of any public institution.
Last year, transmission of HIV to infants in the perinatal period ranked second, behind heterosexual spread, as the largest proportionate increase in AIDS cases.
Senior citizens in Palm Beach County, Fla.--one of the most popular areas for retirees--are contracting AIDS at an alarming rate. According to the July/August issue of "New Choices for Retirement Living," the rate of infection for elderly persons shot up 71 percent between 1992 and 1993 in the area.
Women with intravenous drug-using partners are at high risk for HIV infection, and are the most rapidly growing segment of adults with AIDS in the United States.