Lack of health care providers of color adds to the continued HIV crisis

From the Huffington Post opinion page…

need for health care providers of color…The reasons driving the spread of HIV consist of complex biological and psychosocial factors that include: low perception of risk, testing, and condom use as a result of declining school health programs, sexual activity at a young age with older partners, etc. But there is one factor that people have yet to talk about: The lack of health care providers of color.

In the twenty years that I’ve worked in HIV/AIDS, I’ve seen the number of providers who are black and brown decrease significantly. Perhaps its due to the six figure debt due to medical school, social work, nursing and public health programs that have us go into more lucrative areas of the field instead of community health and primary care. Or maybe it has to do with the number of minority organizations that have had to close their doors due to lack of resources. But one thing is for sure, we will not have an impact on this epidemic if there are not more Black providers to care for the disproportionate number of people with HIV that look like them.

Read the full article on the Huffington Post.

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