By Keith R. Green
I'm not really the type to say "I told you so," but the findings from this study echo sentiments that many of us here in Chicago have been shouting from rooftops for the past year or so: Black gay and bisexual men are less likely to have conversations about our HIV status with sexual partners than our white and Latino counterparts, and we are also less likely to be in care that involves antiretrovirals if we do know that we are positive.
In many ways, in my opinion, these two truths are intertwined in a very intimate way. Many of us don't talk about HIV because we don't know what to do about it, and we don't know what to do about it because we really don't understand the power of antiretrovirals. Now, for the record, that's not because we are ignorant people.
It's quite the contrary, in fact. We remember, or have heard stories, about the early days of antiretroviral therapy and the side effects that many Black people suffered from taking them. Additionally, we've yet to recover psychologically from years of medical science mistreatment stemming back from the days when we were only seen as three-fifths of a person.
So now that we know what we know about the disparities in HIV infection between Black and white MSM (for sure), the real question is...what are we going to do about it?
Read the abstract of the study here.