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New York City Provides No-Cost Condoms, HIV Tests To Elderly

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The New York City Department for the Agingis providing no-cost condoms and HIV tests to the city's elderlypopulation in an effort to prevent the spread of the virus throughoutthe group, the AP/Forbes reports. According to Bernard Branson, associate director for laboratory diagnostics in the Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention at CDC,people ages 50 to 64 accounted for 14% of new HIV diagnoses in 2005,and people ages 65 and older accounted for about 2% of diagnoses.

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According to a study conducted last year by the AIDS Community Research Initiative of America,the majority of people living with HIV/AIDS in New York City will beover age 50 within the next 10 years. Edwin Mendez-Santiago, New YorkCity's commissioner of aging, said, "Often, older people do not concernthemselves with HIV and AIDS because they assume that they are not atrisk, and that can be a tragic mistake." In an effort to promote HIVprevention and education among the elderly, the New York City Council has budgeted $1 million, the AP/Forbes reports.

DanTietz, executive director of the AIDS research initiative, said HIVeducation is needed at New York City senior centers, where the averageage is about 70, because "we know that people are still having sex wellpast 65."

According to the AP/Forbes, smallercampaigns aimed at the elderly also are under way in other cities,including Baltimore. Nancy Orel, a professor of gerontology at Bowling Green State University is organizing a workshop for seniors that will provide no-cost condoms and HIV tests (Matthews, AP/Forbes, 7/25).

Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view theentire Kaiser DailyHIV/AIDS Report, search the archives, and sign up for email delivery at kaisernetwork.org/email . TheKaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service ofThe Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.