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Survey of Americans on HIV/AIDS

This national survey released by the Kaiser Family Foundation finds that Americans increasingly believe the U.S. should be a global leader on HIV/AIDS, including spending more money to fight the epidemic abroad and at home. This comes despite an American characteristic distaste for foreign aid and at a time when there is a growing budget deficit. Six in ten Americans agree that the U.S. is a global leader and has a responsibility to help fight HIV/AIDS in developing countries — up from 44% in 2002.

With this June marking the 25th year of the epidemic (on June 5, 1981, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued its first warning about a disease that would become known as AIDS), there is an opportunity to reflect on the public’s general knowledge about the disease. According to the survey results, significant percentages of Americans still think HIV might be spread through kissing, sharing a drinking glass and touching toilet seat — 37%, 22% and 16% respectively.

The was designed and analyzed by survey researchers at the Kaiser Family Foundation. Interviews were conducted between March 24 and April 18, 2006, among a nationally representative random sample of 2,517 respondents 18 years old and older. The survey covers a variety of topics including HIV/AIDS as a problem for our nation, knowledge and perceptions about HIV/AIDS, domestic HIV spending and program priorities, views on the global HIV epidemic, and African Americans and HIV.

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icon_reports_studies.gifAdditional Findings: HIV Testing

icon_reports_studies.gifAdditional Findings: Opinions and Experiences of 18- to 25-Year-Olds