OSR Journal of Student Research

Article Title

The HIV/AIDS Community, Stigma and Preventative Education Continues to be Overlooked


Since the first reported HIV/AIDS diagnosis in 74 5th Annual Student Research Symposium the beginning of the 1980’s, HIV/AIDS has been stigmatized and dismissed as a “homosexual only” virus. Many also believe and continue to believe that HIV/AIDS is a death sentence. The HIV/AIDS epidemic never ended, and unfortunately many are not educated enough about it to help prevent it. Although there has been extensive research and education surrounding HIV/AIDS, there continues to be a huge amount of misinformation and homophobia toward the HIV/AIDS community. It is important to be aware of the risks and preventative care that is now available for HIV/ AIDS, as well as understanding the HIV/AIDS community. The research study asks whether the understanding of HIV/ AIDS has changed or grown in the United States by using surveys as the primary method of collecting data. The population surveyed varies between the ages of eighteen and up. Research suggest that, overall, the majority of people do not believe that HIV/AIDS is not a major public health issue anymore. Therefore, people are less likely to practice preventative measures for HIV/AIDS during sexual activities, because many continue to believe that a.) HIV/AIDS is only going to be a problem if you are a homosexual and b.) HIV/ AIDS is an automatic death sentence despite available treatments. Keywords: HIV, AIDS, stigma, sex education, death, homophobia.

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