The state is launching a new awareness campaign that encourages African-American and other black residents to get tested for HIV.
The prevalence of HIV and AIDS in Massachusetts is eleven times higher among the black population than among whites. Kevin Cranston of the Department of Public Health says that's why the state is promoting testing in the five Massachusetts cities where infection rates among black residents are highest — Boston, Springfield, Worcester, Lynn and Brockton.
"We want to encourage people to know their HIV status, to talk with their health care provider, with their partners, and with other supports in their lives about their risk for HIV," Cranston says. "Or if they're living with HIV, discussing that with people can be helpful to them."
State officials also want HIV testing to become a regular part of people's health care routines, regardless of race.
This program aired on February 4, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.