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What Every Woman Needs to Know About HIV/AIDS

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March 10th marks the 10th observance of National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day! The Downtown Women’s Center proudly supports efforts to empower each other with information about HIV/AIDS prevention, care, and treatment.


KEY FACTS

Women face unique HIV risks and challenges preventing them from receiving proper care and treatment.

According to the Office of Women’s Health, about one in four people living with HIV in the United States are women 13 or older. Only about 50% of women living with HIV are receiving HIV treatment, and only four in 10 of them have the virus under control.

HIV/AIDS disproportionately affects women of color. Women of color often lack access to health care, adequate housing, and educational opportunities, meaning less access to preventative education and limited treatment options.

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PREVENTATIVE MEASURES

PROTECT YOURSELF. Use a condom correctly every time you have vaginal, anal, or oral sex and avoiding contact with your partner's fluids and blood.

GET TESTED. The only way to know for sure that you have or don't have HIV is to get tested. Talk to your partner and get HIV tested together. Remember that sexually transmitted infections (STIs) raise your risk of getting HIV, so talk to your doctor about STI testing.

TAKE HIV MEDICATION WHILE PREGNANT. If you are pregnant and HIV-positive, taking HIV medications can decrease the risk of passing HIV to your baby to less than 1%.

DO NOT SHARE NEEDLES, syringes, or other injection equipment with others in order to decrease your risk for HIV infection.

EDUCATE OTHERS about the basics of HIV/AIDS, such as you cannot contract HIV from air, toilet seats, or hugs.

LIVE HEALTHY. Take your medicine, see your doctor regularly, exercise, and eat healthy.


HOW TO GET INVOLVED

Help fight the stigma by staying informed and getting involved. Be part of a community that stands together to fight HIV/AIDS!

Join the conversation: #NWGHAAD

Find HIV Testing locations near you: www.WomensHealth.gov/NWGHAAD

Visit us: STI and HIV testing are offered at DWC. All participants can access our drop-in, rapid HIV testing services which are held every last Wednesday from 9:00-11:00am in the Day Center. Please visit our Day Center to access the most current schedule of testing days.


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Stephanie Chen
MSW, MPH, Health Program Specialist


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