Friday, April 10, marks the National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day (NYHAAD). This year’s theme, according to AIDS.gov, is “Engaging Youth Voices in the Response to HIV & AIDS.” Events scheduled around the day—including a social media campaign around #NYHAAD and @YouthAIDSday—offer opportunities to educate the public about the epidemic’s impact on young people and their risk for the virus.
NYHAAD is organized by Advocates for Youth, which promotes adolescent sexual health.
According the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 47 percent of young people surveyed in 2013 were sexually active and 41 percent of them did not use a condom the last time they had intercourse. Other CDC statistics include:
- Nearly 10,000 young people ages 13 to 24 were diagnosed with HIV in the United States in 2013
- Young men ages 13 to 24 who have sex with other men accounted for an estimated 19 percent (8,800) of all new HIV infections in the United States, and 72 percent of new cases among youth in 2010
- Nearly half of the 20 million new sexually transmitted infections (STIs) each year were among young people ages of 15 to 24
- Nearly 273,000 babies were born to girls ages 15 to 19 in 2013