World AIDS Day to mark 25th year

By Amy Cherry 1:21pm, November 30, 2012
Peter Houle, Executive Director of the Del. HIV Consortium tells us more about their fight against HIV/AIDS.
World Aids Day marks its 25th anniversary Saturday.

WDEL's Amy Cherry tells us more about local efforts to combat the epidemic.

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Now Delawareans can get HIV testing as part of their routine health screening. The Delaware HIV Consortium Executive Director Peter Houle they're also working on expanding testing sites.

"Our goal is to reduce the stigma of offering HIV testing in non-traditional settings such as this Walgreens Pharmacy," says Houle.

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Free HIV testing is available at the North Market Street Walgreens in Wilmington Friday from 9am-5pm, for the first time ever, and the pharmacy hopes to expand that free testing to once a month in the New Year.

He says it's all part of their goal for...

"Zero AIDS related deaths, zero new infections, and zero discrimination and stigma," says Houle.

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Division of Public Health Director Dr. Karyl Rattay says AIDS deaths have dropped, but...

"Still, 46 people died in the State of Delaware last year from AIDS. That's still way too many," she says.

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And the group that's at very high risk may surprise. Rattay says it'll make you want to talk to your kids.

"Youth ages 13-24 are those who have about 36% of the new HIV infections every year," says Rattay.

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