Message from the Director of Health Initiatives, Dora Garcia:
“The high HIV rates among Latinos and other minority groups reflect the social and economic inequalities in which we live. Guided by social justice principles, Vida/SIDA provides wrap-around services to help our clients overcome the challenges faced to live healthier and more fulfilling lives.”
Vida/SIDA provides culturally and linguistically appropriate HIV prevention services to Latinos and other minority groups with a focus on the needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals at risk for or living with HIV. We have over 25 years of experience adapting, implementing, and evaluating evidence-based interventions. Our services not only seek to change individual risk factors but also address the social determinants of health that negatively affect the health of minorities. Vida/SIDA seeks to empower community members to think critically about their realities and to take control of their lives.
In 2014, Vida/SIDA tested for HIV 2,436 participants through all of its programs. Seventy-three percent (73%) of the tested clients were male, while one out of four (26%) were females. The average age of the clients served was 27, with a median age of 23, meaning that half of all clients tested on 2014 were 23 years or younger. Four out of five tested (77.3%) were Latinos. Vida/SIDA clients are screened for HIV, STIs, Syphilis, and Hepatitis C risk behavior, if we assess that the individuals are at risk then we proceed to test. Nine out of ten of all clients were tested for HIV, Vida/SIDA had a 1% positivity rate for HIV in 2014. One out of four clients were tested for gonorrhea and chlamydia, resulting in a 4% and 12% positivity rate, respectively. Only 6% of all Vida/SIDA clients were tested for syphilis, still about one out of ten (9%) tested positive. Although only 7% clients were tested for Hepatitis C, approximately one out of three tested positive (31% positivity rate).