AIDS Activist Barbara Joseph Lists the Top 5 Reasons Teens Contract HIV

AIDS Activist Barbara Joseph Lists the Top 5 Reasons Teens Contract HIV

Name: Barbara Joseph

Occupation: Positive Efforts Non- Profit Executive Director

Years Active: 29 years

Have any new drugs been approved for the HIV cure?

There is no cure for HIV. However there are many HIV trials and research being done along with the improvement of anti-viral drugs. In the beginning the medication was a combination of multiple pills, up to 10 daily, but there are treatments out now that only require one to two pills.

What are the Top 5 reasons that teens contract HIV?

1. Lack of education in the schools on sex education and HIV.

2. Peer pressure to have sex.

3. Teens who are sexually active usually don’t know their status.

4. Most teens who have been tested do not share their status with their partners.

5. Parents are not engaging in conversations about sex with their children. Because of this most teens who say that they are not sexually active usually are.

What financial assistance is out there for those suffering with the virus?

Those in need of assistance can contact the ADAP (AIDS Drug Assistance Program) and some pharmaceutical companies offer aid if you fit the criteria. In many areas of the country, there continues to be a waiting list to receive assistance and to be accepted into trials. Although, most trials require that you have multiple health issues to qualify.

What issues will you pose at the 2012 International HIV/AIDS Conference this month?

As the chair of the National Black Women’s HIV/AIDS Network I will be a part of a roundtable that will address the growing infection rate of women and other pressing issues such as HIV trials, domestic violence, health disparities, cost of care and how women are counted in the epidemiology data.

What can we expect to see from Positive Efforts this year?

Positive Efforts will be incorporating a focus group for men and women, and collaborating with the art community to find venues and mobilize community efforts to bring awareness [in] greater numbers.

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