Welcome

Thank you for visiting paducahsun.com, the online home of The Paducah Sun.

Calendar
June 2012
S M T W T F S
27 28 29 30 31 01 02

Click here to submit an event.

Southern Illinois HIV cases hit decade high

Associated Press

MURPHYSBORO, Ill. - HIV cases in southern Illinois reached the highest number in nearly a decade last year, with more than half the infections from the virus that causes AIDS reported in people 24 years old or younger, public health officials said.

Complacency in public education about the virus was cited as the main reason for the increase, according to officials.

The Southern Illinois HIV Care Connect office in Jackson County's health department, which tracks the data in 19 counties, said the region stretching from Mount Vernon to Cairo has averaged 14 to 15 new HIV cases a year. But that number jumped to 21 in 2012 and to 23 last year.

Given the prevalence of the disease among teenagers and young adults, Dr. Erica Kaufman - Southern Illinois Healthcare's infectious diseases specialist - said she believes "we are in a time when a lot of young people don't know about HIV."

"People know a bit about HIV, but they don't know the devastation of it," Kaufman said. "They don't know that it changes their lives."

Tony Wyatt, 56, of Murphysboro has lived with HIV since 1994, said his outreach through Southern Illinois HIV Care Connect often has fallen on deaf ears in recent years.

Comments made about this article - 0 Total

Comment on this article

Your comment has been submitted for approval
captcha e7eeed62925b4c78bdcb23f1288f1414
Top Classifieds

Most Popular
  1. Hospital holds grand opening for Hospice House
  2. It's finally feeling like winter
  3. RUN OFF Obama worked hard to alienate workforce
  1. Teacher barred for 12 years after dragging student by hair
  2. Authorities probing package thefts
  3. FNB donates to schools
  1. Hospital holds grand opening for Hospice House
  2. It's finally feeling like winter
  3. Quilter brings new color to Paducah
Discussion

Check out these recently discussed stories and voice your opinion...