Health Alert

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Testing for HIV/AIDS as a part of routine medical care seems like it should be welcomed by everyone. I have just a few observations that challenge I need answers to before I am ready to fully support the new initiative.What is going to happen to all of the testing information? Will insurance companies, pharmaceuticals and potential employers get access to the information? If so what safe guards are in place so that information is not used against us? This information is also linked to stigmas about HIV/AIDS. The legal perspective is a major concern but our faith communities, work place and community at large do not need to have access to the information about our status and no one is discussing how to protect us against this.
Most of the people who have healthcare and can afford regular check ups are not the major groups that are currently at the highest risk. Poor minority women , especially African American women, and single elderly men who frequent prostitutes. If everyone needs to be tested then make the total healthcare package affordable to everyone. This is the time to initiate universal healthcare.
When I read the report Eliminate Disparities in HIV and AIDS and careful read and analyze the policies and programs designed around HIV/AIDS I am concerned that the activities are not producing outcomes that are achieving the stated goals. Rick Warren in a recent article entitled What your church can do to help eradicate HIV/AIDS makes it clear that the church is not doing enough to combat HIV/AIDS. David Munar of AIDS Foundation of Chicago writes an article Latinos and HIV: An Epidemic Waiting to Burst? In this article he is compelling the Latino community not to be complacent about their vigilance to educate and protect against being infected.

My challenge is to each person who reads this blog to take the personal responsibility to become active in the struggle, programming and education about HIV/AIDS. The time is now.

Reflecting on a 21st Century Epidemic
Be Adventurous !
Rev. William T Chaney Jr
West Baltimore UMC
5130 Greenwich
Baltimore, MD 21229
(410) 945-8397
West Baltimore UMC is an Acts 2 church: Transforming the 40 West Corridor by Being and Making Disciples for Christ