Demograhic Papers

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Demograhic Paper
Darlene Broussard
December 10, 2012

Demographic Paper HIV/AIDS infections are on the rise among adolescents, particularly among racial and ethnic minority populations and young women. The following statistics highlight the incidence and correlative factors of HIV/AIDS among adolescents and young adults. Fifty percent of all new HIV infections occur in young people under the age of 25, with an estimated 20,000 or more young people infected annually (Center For Disease Control and Prevention, 2001). Approximately 50 percent of all high school students in grades nine through 12 have had sexual intercourse; almost 25 percent of all 12th graders have had four or more partners. About one-half of these same 12th graders reported using a latex condom during intercourse (American Association of World Health, 1999). Research shows that older male partners present a greater HIV transmission risk than adolescent males because they are more likely to have had multiple sex partners, more varied sexual and drug experiences, and to be infected with HIV. Older men engaging in sex with younger women is disproportionately high in African American and Latino populations (Department of Health and Human Services, 1998). A seven city study conducted between 1994 and 1998 found that just over 7 percent of young men who have sex with men (MSMs) are HIV positive; the study found that the rates increased with age and were higher among African Americans, Hispanics, and men of mixed race than among Caucasians or Asian/Pacific Islanders. MSMs continue to be at high risk for HIV infection. In 1999, at least half of all reported HIV infections among males aged 13 through 24 occurred among young men who have sex with men (American Federation of AIDS Research, 2001). The major demographic processes mortality and fertility are affected by AIDS. Direct effects on mortality occur because AIDS causes the deaths of adult and children. The effects on fertility are indirect and less well understood. The accumulation of these direct and indirect effects causes changes in other demographic indicators. The most direct demographic consequence is an increase in mortality. Without effective treatment of HIV infection people will die of AIDS. The period from infection to illness in the absence of effective treatment estimated to be 7.5-10 years. In the medium term therapy is unlikely to make a difference to life expectancy in the non-industrialized world. It is too expensive, requires a fairly sophisticated delivery system, and people need to know they are infected in order to access it. AIDS affects almost every aspect of social and economic life. Health care systems are stretched beyond their limits as they not only deal with a growing number of AIDS patients and the loss of health personnel due to death and illness, but also cope with rising cases of tuberculosis the most common infection associated with AIDS. Individuals, families, and communities are badly affected by the epidemic. The burden of care falls on the families and children of those who are ill. Often they have already lost a breadwinner and the meager resources they have left are not enough to provide care for the ill person and food for the family. Children who are orphaned are often deprived not only of parental care but also of financial support. Many of them leave school and have