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July 20, 2010

Poverty Driving HIV's Spread Among Urban Heterosexuals: Report

US News and World Report: "In the poorer neighborhoods of America's cities, about 1 in every 50 heterosexual adults are now infected with HIV -- a much higher rate than is seen in the general population, U.S. health officials report.

"The finding suggests that poverty plays a crucial role in spread of the virus that causes AIDS, according to a team from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

"The link between low income and a higher risk of getting infected with HIV held regardless of race or ethnicity, the researchers found. ...

"The rate of HIV infection was especially steep among the least well-off. For example, 2.4 percent of people living below the poverty line were infected with HIV versus 1.2 percent of those living above the poverty line [but still poor], the team found.

"Those rates are substantially higher than the national average of HIV infection, which is estimated at 0.45 percent of the population."