This year’s Louisville AIDS Walk organizers remind us that HIV/AIDS remains a growing problem in the Louisville metro area. Since 2000, the number of people in Louisville living with AIDS has increased 64%. The number of HIV cases in nearby Indiana counties has gone up even more: in Clark County, by 127%, and in Floyd County by 132%. While knowing that there are now drugs that have an effect on the progression of the illness, and hearing from HIV+ folks, may give the impression that AIDS is not as serious a disease as it used to be, this would be a mistake. Over 1 in 5 of the individuals diagnosed with AIDS in Kentucky in the year 2000 died within five years of their diagnosis. While the good news there is that 4 in 5 have a better prognosis, a disease with a 20-25% mortality in a short time, according to my physician source, is a bad one — in the same neighborhood as smallpox.
Between now and September 28, we have an opportunity to do something concrete to be part of the effort to aid HIV/AIDS sufferers and their families, and to promote the cause of healing. The Women’s Center is once again organizing a team of fundraiser/walkers for the 16th Annual Louisville AIDS Walk, which will happen Sunday, September 28. Registration and entertainment will begin at the Belvedere downtown at 1:00, and the walk proper begins at 3:00. We hope you’ll help us in our effort to raise money for this cause by joining the team, asking family, friends, and acquaintances for support, and contributing to our team’s online donation page. See you Sunday, September 28!