City of Rochester
(Wednesday, June 25, 2014) – According Trillium Health, outside of New York City, Rochester has the second highest HIV infection rate per capita in the state. In 2010, young people ages 13 through 29, accounted for more than 30 percent of all new infections. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that in Monroe County, more than 52 percent of people living with HIV are African American males.
In hopes to bring awareness to these statistics, Mayor Lovely A. Warren is teaming up with The MOCHA Center to encourage young people at risk to get an HIV test on Friday, June 27—National HIV Testing Day, to routinely get tested and to practice healthy behaviors.
Each year, on June 27, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), AIDS.gov (an official government website managed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services), and other national and local entities across the country promote National HIV Testing Day. The initiative sends the message, “Take the Test, Take Control,” to those at risk from HIV.
The MOCHA Center is a nonprofit organization based in Buffalo and Rochester with a mission to improve the health and wellness of LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) Communities of Color. MOCHA’s local medical care partners are the Anthony Jordan Health Center and Trillium Health.
“We know that HIV does not discriminate, and early treatment may enable HIV positive people to live longer, healthier lives,” said Mayor Warren. The Mayor’s message is part of a public service announcement (PSA) coordinated with National HIV Testing Day, and may be viewed on the City’s website at www.cityofrochester.gov/HIVawareness. Along with the PSA, users will find a feature provided by AIDS.gov that allows website visitors to locate sites in Rochester offering HIV testing. The locator feature uses a zip code to generate a list of testing sites and care services in up to a 50-mile radius.
“We are excited to partner with Mayor Warren and hope that this visibility will generate new conversations, increase awareness, and reduce the incidence of HIV in the Rochester community,” said Bruce E. Smail, Executive Director of The MOCHA Center. The MOCHA Center, located at 107 Liberty Pole Way, offers free, confidential HIV testing and accepts walk-ins.
“Have a conversation about HIV and HIV testing,” Mayor Warren continued. “Knowing your status is the first step in reducing the spread of HIV in our community.”
News Media: For more information, contact Communications Director Christine Christopher at 428-7135.