The picture of HIV/AIDS in the Hispanic community as a whole is even dearer than that among Hispanic older adults. In 2013, 23% of all new HIV/AIDS diagnoses were among Hispanics. Research data indicate that there are a number of social, economic, and individual factors that contribute to the higher rates of HIV/AIDS among the aging Hispanic community. These are summarized below:
• Poverty and lack of access to health insurance: Hispanic older adults experience a high rate of poverty and economic insecurity, compared to the larger population in the U.S. Twenty percent of U.S. Hispanic older adults aged 65 and older are poor compared with 10% of the older adult population as a whole. Moreover, about one in four of all uninsured people nationwide is Hispanic, and during the fall of 2014, 25%...
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... sexual partners who have sex with men apart from their relationship with them, contributing to susceptibility of Hispanic women to HIV/AIDS. In addition, among men who have sex with men, stigma in the Hispanic community may result in them living a hidden sexual life, which contributes to unsafe sexual practices and the spread of HIV infection. Finally, Hispanics older adults are more likely to have sex with those of their own race and ethnicity, which statistically makes them more susceptible to being exposed to HIV.
• Cultural or Social Issues from outside the Hispanic community: Physicians often do not consider HIV symptoms among older adults as being attributed to HIV and therefore, they do not recommend testing. Instead, they assume that these symptoms are part of the aging process. In the same way, education campaigns often do not target older adults.
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