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D.C. Uses Viral Loads To Measure HIV-AIDS Progress

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Washington D.C. is one of few cities in the nation that receives viral loads from health clinics. New cases of HIV/AIDS are down by half over the last two years.
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Washington D.C. is one of few cities in the nation that receives viral loads from health clinics. New cases of HIV/AIDS are down by half over the last two years.

As the District tackles the HIV-AIDS epidemic, the city is using new ways to gauge its progress against the disease. Measuring the viral load -- that is the amount of HIV in a person’s blood -- has become an important tool, both for individuals managing the virus and for cities like D.C. that track viral loads on a community level.

For individuals, a low or even undetectable viral load is often achieved through effective use of anti-retroviral drugs. Having a low viral load not only signals a healthier immune system, but doctors say it may also reduce the risk of transmission. That’s one reason why public health officials in D.C. are now tracking what’s called “community viral loads”:

D.C. is one of the few cities in the United States that receives viral load information from health clinics. City health officials use that data to see if there are any disparities in care among at-risk groups.

WAMU 88.5

Taking Great Photos On Vacation Or "Staycation"

Professional photographers give us the latest on cameras, smart phones and shooting tips for great vacation photos this summer -- and every day.

NPR

Squeezed By Drought, California Farmers Switch To Less Thirsty Crops

Water scarcity is leading farmers away from planting staples and towards planting higher-value, lower-water specialty crops. Think wine grapes and pomegranates instead of citrus and avocados.
WAMU 88.5

Obama's Trip To Africa & Foreign Aid

By visiting Africa this month, President Obama is drawing attention to one of the diplomatic tools that most directly shapes America's relationships with other countries: foreign aid and assistance. But now all policy makers at home feel the United States is pursuing the soundest strategy when it comes to providing aid abroad. We explore the issue with the official in charge of the Africa portfolio for the United States Agency for International Development.

WAMU 88.5

Taking Great Photos On Vacation Or "Staycation"

Professional photographers give us the latest on cameras, smart phones and shooting tips for great vacation photos this summer -- and every day.

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