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Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico has some of the most concerning HIV/AIDS statistics in the United States. The following data only begin to describe the HIV/AIDS crisis on the island:
  • Puerto Rico ranked in the top 10 AIDS case rates among all states and territories in 2010;
  • Puerto Rico has an HIV death rate higher than any U.S. state or territory,1 a rate nearly 4 times the national rate;
  • In 2010, the rate of HIV infection diagnosis was 33.8 (4th in the U.S.), compared with the United States’ total rate of HIV infection of 19.7.2
  • The San Juan Metropolitan Area is part of the 12 Cities Project, which supports and accelerates comprehensive HIV/AIDS planning and cross‐agency response in the 12 U.S. jurisdictions that bear the highest AIDS burden in the country.
  • The main HIV transmission category for adult males in the San Juan Metropolitan Area is injection drug use, followed by male‐to‐male sexual contact (42% and 27% of male cases, respectively). This trend differs from that exhibited in the United States in general, where 60% of AIDS diagnoses in adult males resulted from male‐to‐male sexual contact and 21% from injection drug use.3
AIDS United’s funding collaborative with Elton John AIDS Foundation, H. van Ameringen Foundation, Johnson & Johnson and MAC AIDS Fund is designed to build the capacity of community-based organizations on the island to most effectively combat the epidemic. The funds from this collaborative have supported the prevention work of six organizations, reaching the islands most impacted populations including young gay & bisexual men, young people, and substance users.

1 This statistic excludes the District of Columbia, which is not a state and is somewhat of an anomaly and not comparable to states and territories in that it’s comprised only of a densely populated urban area. Additionally, Guam and the Virgin Islands have insufficient data for calculating HIV death rates.
2 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Health and Human Services, HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report: Cases of HIV Infection and AIDS in the United States and Dependent Areas, 2010, 2012.
3 Puerto Rico Enhanced Comprehensive HIV Prevention, April 14, 2011., page 10.

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