The purpose of this project is to provide an overview of HIV/AIDS levels in Miami-Dade County, discussing causes, prevention and future implications to the entire region. This study identifies the County’s population, demographic characteristics, resources available and recommendation to the identified and proposed initiatives in the county in regards to HIV/AIDS. Miami-Dade County is the second most populous county in the United States with the highest levels of HIV/AIDS among its residents.
Introduction/ Identification of the problem
This project is a study of Miami-Dade County showing levels of HIV/AIDS including prevention, education and risk reduction, surveillance, patient care services as well as counseling and testing in the county. The study’s primary objective is to identify levels of HIV/AIDS, treatment and prevention which will focus on promoting centers for prevention and disease control.
Demographic characteristics of Miami Dade County
Miami-Dade County has the highest percentage of foreign-born residents at 50.3% and 61.0% comprising of individuals of Hispanic or Latin descent. 68% of its residents are Hispanic, who is the majority, 8% are black, whites comprise about 12% while the remaining 2% comprises of other ethnicity/race (Aguirre, 2010, p. 111). It accommodates the poorest large city in the nation showing that its residents particularly the immigrants have very little ability to provide their families with basic services including health care services. In regard to health, Florida State has literally been at the center of the HIV/AIDS epidemic since the early 1980s. It has the highest reported annual AIDS rate in the United States. The largest percentage of HIV/AIDS cases in this county comprises of Latinos, this is due to the increase in HIV exposure especially through Injection Drug Use (IDU) which is alarming in the County. As the leading population living with HIV or AIDS in U.S, it is estimated that 1% of the population in Miami-Dade are living with HIV/AIDS and close to 29% of its residents do not have health insurance (Aguirre, 2010, p. 128).
Statistics of Miami Dade County
Miami-Dade County is arguably the largest metropolitan area in Florida. It has an estimated population of 2,800,503 residents which represents 13.4% of Florida’s population (Sanders, 2010, p. 98). It comprises of a diverse mixture of both residents and visitors which makes it one of the leading international communities in the United States. Socioeconomic and demographic characteristics of Miami-Dade aggravate substance use and HIVIAIDS epidemics since it is the only county in the United States with the most immigrants who are almost entirely Latino. Over 60% of Miami-Dade’s population live in poor conditions, that is; medically underserved areas. This percentage faces significant social, cultural and economic or linguistic barriers to health care. In this county, the biggest majority of the underserved population constitutes of Latinos whose mean age is 33 years. They are 80% self identified homosexuals or gay and among these, 19% are bisexual. Close to 47% of the residents in Miami Dade County were born outside the United States while 18% name Cuba as their country of origin.
Geographical boundaries of Miami Dade County Miami-Dade County is located in the southeastern part of Florida and has a population of 2,496,435 making it the most populous county in Florida. It is the third largest county with 1,946 square miles. The socioeconomic profile of the County has an intense effect on its population’s standard of living healthily. For instance, certain unique languages and cultures could sometimes serve to construct access barriers that predominantly affect children, women, refugees and the minorities hindering them from accessing community resources. In Miami Dade-County, there is an estimated 94 different languages that are spoken in close to all public schools and in many businesses in South Florida. Major barriers in this county are poverty and affordable housing, which hinder improvement and development of public health as well as reducing health disparities. For instance, in the County, there is a big gap in the affordability of housing which does not amount to 30% of all household income (Sanders, 2010, p. 114). Nursing diagnosis
In Miami Dade-County, there is an initiative; Test Miami initiative which basically is a collaborative effort between HIV counselors, Miami Dade County Health Department and Florida Department of Health, Public sector, health providers and concerned citizens that aim to:
- Improve Miami-Dade residents’ understanding of HIV
- Promote routine HIV testing by physicians
- Reduce transmission of HIV.
The Black community in Miami Dade-County is quite diverse as compared to the rest of the nation. It is a diverse mixture of people who have emigrated from Caribbean countries, Central and South America and African-Americans. An HIV / AIDS epidemic is a big threat especially for the black community. It is estimated that one out of 45 blacks in is living with AIDS or HIV in Miami Dade as compared to the ratio of 1: 179 for the Latino/Hispanic and 1: 120 for the whites. Blacks represent the largest ethnic/racial group of these individuals who died of AIDS since the beginning of the epidemic and those living with HIV or AIDS.
In Miami-Dade County, women are the most severely affected by HIV/AIDS majorly due to the rampant heterosexual contact mode of transmission. Black females represent 74% of all reported cases of AIDS which are related to unemployment, poverty lack of health insurance and economic factors. (MSM) Men who have Sex with Men epidemic are intense in this county making it the most populous County in the risky behavior. Planning
- Routine HIV testing in every health care setting in Miami-Dade County
- Eliminate prenatal transmission
- Encourage individuals to seek treatment if needed after knowing their HIV status
- Increase accessibility to services
- Stopping the spread of HIV/AIDS
- An open channel of communication between medical providers and clients
- Enabling individuals to take better care of their health
- Reducing discrimination and stigma against those infected and affected by HIV/ADS
- Enhance personal ethics, commitment and civic responsibility on HIV/AIDS among health care providers.
Short term goals
Among short term goals are: introducing physical symposiums in the county on early intervention services that will enhance awareness of HIV/AIDS. Secondly, Miami-Dade county should work with Florida/Caribbean Training and Education Center to enhance and improve prenatal testing which will focus on routine testing in every health facility and also focus on achievement of uniform third trimester testing.
Long term goals
The long term goals of the Miami - Dade project on HIV/AIDS prevention and eradication will focus on setting up risk assessment kiosks particularly on designated health care settings enhance more access to HIV testing. Close to that, there is a need to promote prevention for positives which will include compliance and adherence, peer education and also ARTAS (Antiretroviral Treatment Access Studies). Lastly, facilitating Attorney Symposium to provide a progressive Legal Education Certification in Miami-Dade County mandated laws, statutes governing the administration of HIV testing and counseling and policies will greatly bring awareness on the fatal disease (Swanson, 2012, p. 228). Evaluation
Strong and fruitful partnership is important to the successful execution of jurisdictional HIV prevention plans. Certain organizations such as ECHPP strengthened both community partners and existing relationships among health departments both in the public and private sectors. These organizational initiatives will focus on a number of issues:
- Engaging prevention partners, community and stakeholders
- Key partnership with local government
- Creating both new and sustainable partnerships
Engaging local communities in initiatives that focus on HIV/AIDS prevention is critical in reaching the goals set by these organizations. Certain structural factors such as planning efforts and separate funding streams will create and sustain venerable HIV prevention within public and private health care centers and NGOs. Alongside that, community and public operations will be improved with the growing and sustaining collaborations which are geared at reducing and preventing HIV/AIDS prevention in Miami-Dade County. Recommendations
The goal towards reducing and preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS in Miami Dade County will include the following treatment options:
- Routine test: These routine tests will sharply cut the 20% estimated number of patients with HIV which will help reduce stigma of HIV.
- Target prevention effort: This effort is aimed at benefiting young adults from listening to hipper messages in night clubs and through social media.
- Preventive measures: Provision of condoms and other preventive items too will ultimately reduce the growing rates of HIV/AIDS in the County (Swanson, 2010, p. 132).
The spread and rate of HIV/. AIDS infection in Miami-Dade county is alarming, risky sexual behaviors among the residents of the county has been the biggest cause of the . Many heterosexuals, bisexual and gay people in Miami do not use condoms and engage in risky behaviors that put them at risks for HIV/AIDS. People have to be honest to themselves, their partners and families, since there is no cure of the disease, preventive measure such as safe sex will help prevent the spread of the virus.
Aguirre-Molina, M., Borrell, L. N., & Vega, W. (2010). Health issues in Latino males: A social and structural approach. New Brunswick, N.J: Rutgers University Press.
Sanders, B., Thomas, Y. F., & Deeds, B. (2010). Crime, HIV and health intersections of criminal justice and public health concerns. Dordrecht: Springer.
Swanson, B., & Association of Nurses in AIDS Care. (2010). ANAC's core curriculum for HIV/AIDS nursing. Sudbury, Mass: Jones and Bartlett.