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National Black HIV/AIDS Day Set for Monday

Minnesota NewsST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Free, confidential HIV testing is being offered this week in conjunction with the 11th annual National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day on Monday.

The Minnesota Department of Health reports that infection rates among African-American and African-born communities are some of the highest in the state.

In 2009, statewide rates for African-Americans were about 11 times greater than whites. Among African-born communities, infection rates were about 20 times greater than whites.

Health Department expert Peter Carr says those communities face particular issues that contribute to the high rates, including cultural stigmas and poverty, which can limit access to quality health care.

The free, confidential testing starts at 9 a.m. Monday at the Crown Medical Clinic, 1925 1st Avenue South, in Minneapolis and continues during normal business hours through Thursday.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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