I really, really, really wish I could say I was surprised:
The District's report found a 22 percent increase in HIV and AIDS cases from the 12,428 reported at the end of 2006, touching every race and sex across population and neighborhoods, with an epidemic level in all but one of the eight wards. Black men, with an infection rate of nearly 7 percent, carry the weight of the disease, according to the report, which also underscores that the District's HIV and AIDS population is aging. Almost 1 in 10 residents between the ages of 40 and 49 has the virus.
The report notes that "this growing population will have significant implications on the District's health care system" as residents face chronic medical problems associated with aging and fighting a disease that compromises the immune system.
Men having sex with men has remained the disease's leading mode of transmission. Heterosexual transmission and injection drug use closely follow, the report says. Three percent of black women carry the virus, partly a result of the increase in heterosexual transmissions.
There's something to be said for the demographics of D.C. making this possible. But still, those numbers are just shocking.
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