Office on Women's Health Blog
Reproductive and Sexual Health
I am not HIV-positive. But I care. In fact, I think it is vitally important for all of us to care about the well-being of those that are living with HIV/AIDS. After all, we care about people with cancer. We care about people with Alzheimer's and diabetes. But a stigma remains when it comes to HIV and AIDS.
Today, the Office of National AIDS Policy, Office of the Vice President, and the White House Council on Women and Girls commemorate the 10th observance of National Women & Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. Along with other federal, national, and community organizations and advocates, today we celebrate our accomplishments to date in improving the lives of women and girls affected by HIV and recognize the work still ahead.
I don't think anything can prepare you for the moment when they unveil the piece of paper that contains your fate. Even though the odds seemed to be against me, I was not prepared to be told I had HIV. Turns out, the doctor had worse news: It was actually an AIDS diagnosis and the doctor gave me 3 to 6 months to live.
Despite an encouraging decrease in new HIV infections among black women (21 percent between 2008 and 2010), if the current trend continues, 1 in 32 black women will be infected with HIV in their lifetimes.
Did you know that half of pregnancies in the U.S. are not planned? And did you know that planned pregnancies are better for mothers' and infants' health? That's why the U.S. Office of Population Affairs and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released formal recommendations on family planning services. I spoke with Susan B. Moskosky, acting director of the Office of Population Affairs, to learn more about quality family planning and why it matters.
Be an influencer! Research shows women influence the habits of those around them. When we set a positive example by prioritizing our own health, we encourage others to make healthy choices, too — including our kids. Fortunately, it's never been easier for women to take control of their health.
Your health isn't just important to you — it's important to us, too. For the past 30 years, the HHS Coordinating Committee on Women's Health (CCWH) has been leading the charge to help women and girls achieve the best possible health.
Now is a critical time to act on opportunities to combat viral hepatitis. We urge you to share these information resources with colleagues, family, healthcare providers, and community leaders. By raising awareness about viral hepatitis among Hispanic/Latino communities—and all communities who are living with undiagnosed, untreated disease—we can save the lives of hundreds of thousands of individuals.