The Centers for Disease Control has issued a report that more than 1.2 million Americans are currently living with HIV, including about 156,300 who aren’t aware of it.
That adds up to about 13 percent of people carrying the virus who aren’t adequately prepared to manage their own health and pose a high risk of infecting others.
The L.A. Times reports that the White House has set a goal for 90 percent of people infected to be aware of their status. As of 2012, only four states — Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii and New York — had met that benchmark, the CDC stated last week during a Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Colorado came very close, and another seven states — Alaska, Idaho, Maine, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota and Vermont — may be meeting the target but didn’t have enough new HIV cases in recent years to provide a reliable estimate.
Louisiana ranked lowest in HIV awareness at 77 percent.
Among men who have sex with men — a group that accounts for about 60 percent or new infections per year — only Hawaii met the 90 percent goal, though New York came close and estimates suggest Alaska, Maine, Montana and Vermont have also hit the mark.
Moral of the story? Go get tested.