National Asian and Pacific Islander HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
May 19 marks the annual National Asian and Pacific Islander (API) HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. This observance day was created to raise awareness
about how HIV/AIDS affects Asian and Pacific Islander communities in the U.S.
Major Challenges in the Fight Against HIV/AIDS In API
Cultural barriers regarding discussing sexual behavior, death, and illness
can prevent the spread of useful prevention and treatment information.
There is a lack of doctors and health care providers who have
appropriate linguistic and cultural competencies, creating another
barrier to quality care.
Women often put their family and spousesí health above their
own, often waiting to seek services or care until they are already
ill. Additionally, finding providers who are sensitive to gender and
cultural issues is difficult.
APIs, particularly women, have a low rate of HIV testing overall and a
high rate of anonymous testing due to a concern about the security
of confidential testing.
For many immigrants, the denial of residency because of an HIV-positive status
has deterred them from getting tested and accessing health services.