NEW HIV INFECTIONS INCLUDE OLDER AMERICANS Health Officials Urge Routine Testing to Age 64

By Rogers, Adrian | The Spokesman-Review (Spokane, WA), May 19, 2013 | Go to article overview

NEW HIV INFECTIONS INCLUDE OLDER AMERICANS Health Officials Urge Routine Testing to Age 64


Rogers, Adrian, The Spokesman-Review (Spokane, WA)


"Have sex? Age is not a condom."

The message appears on posters featuring mature-looking models and another piece of advice: "Talk to your doctor about your sex life."

The posters, designed by the AIDS Community Research Initiative of America, are part of an outreach effort to encourage older Americans to practice safe sex and get tested for HIV.

New infections among people older than 50 amounted to nearly 11 percent of new infections from 2006 to 2009, according to an estimate prepared for the HIV Incidence Surveillance Group. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends routine testing for everyone ages 13 to 64.

Yet older people may be mistakenly considered at less risk, said Ann Bruce, a caseworker at the Spokane Regional Health District: "'Well, let's see, you're a gay young male. Let's test you.' But what about a middle-aged soccer mom?"

Meanwhile, unsafe sex practices often go unmentioned by primary care doctors, according to a paper on HIV and older Americans published recently in the American Journal of Public Health. …

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