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Pediatrics Academy Urges Teen HIV Testing

There’s a sobering headline for you.

The American Academy of Pediatrics wants pediatricians testing all teens routinely for the virus that causes AIDS in areas where a certain percentage of the population is HIV+.

Of the million Americans living with HIV in 2006, apparently the last year that we have full stats for such things, more than 55,000 were between the ages of 13 and 24.

Maybe it’s that mechanism in a young person’s brain that convinces them that they’re invincible. I guess that’s what it is.

But between calls for routine HIV tests and calls for routine vaccination for HPV, a sexually-transmitted virus, I honestly wonder why teens would risk touching anyone out of fear of catching something nasty.

Yes, I’m a recovering hypochondriac, so of course I’d think that way.

Still, I’d hate to think of what’ll be waiting for the next generation at it’s hitting puberty.

Pediatrics Academy Urges Teen HIV Testing
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2 comments
DianaCT
DianaCT

One of the reasons that AIDS/HIV is increasing in that age group is lack of education in schools. The number of schools that teach abstinence-only sex education programs is increasing and the number of schools that teach safe-sex is decreasing. We are seeing the results of those policies now with an increase in STIs in teenagers.

http://ari.ucsf.edu/science/reports/abstinence.pdf

BTW, another age group where AIDS/HIV is increasing is the 65+ age group.

patricksplace
patricksplace moderator

@DianaCT I agree that not teaching safe sex is a major problem. I suspect, also, that part of the problem may well be treatments that have extended HIV+ patients' lives that may be giving people a false sense of security. It’s a shame that there are so many people in this country who would rather NOTHING be said about sex as if that’s going to stop any teenager from experimenting with it.