25 YEARS OF AN EPIDEMIC

Milestones in the Battle Against AIDS

1981

  • On June 5, the Centers for Disease Control reports an unusual outbreak of Pneumocystis carini pneumonia (PCP) among young gay men.
  • In July, The New York Times reports the appearance of a rare cancer, Kaposi's sarcoma, among 41 gay men in new York and California.

1982

  • The Minnesota Department of Health reports the first report of four Minnesotans living with AIDS.  100% mortality rate within the same year.
  • In September, the CDC formally names the disease Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS).

1983

  • Minnesota AIDS Project is founded.
  • 5 Minnesotans are diagnosed with AIDS.  100% mortality rate within the same year.

1984

  • The Human Immunodeficiency Virus, HIV, the viral agent that causes AIDS, is identified.
  • Ryan White, a 13 year-old hemophiliac, is diagnosed with AIDS and soon barred from school for fear the disease will spread through casual contact.
  • 24 Minnesotans are diagnosed with AIDS.  100% mortality rate within the same year.

1985

  • The Aliveness Project opens its doors.
  • Condoms are found to prevent the spread of HIV.
  • Rock Hudson announces he has AIDS.
  • 53 Minnesotans are diagnosed with AIDS.  For the first time the mortality rate is 93% and continues to drop in future years.

1986

  • Open Arms of Minnesota open its doors.

1987

  • The first house for people living with HIV and AIDS (Samaritan House) opens.  Samaritan House is now called Domiano and is run by Clare Housing.
  • The FDA approves AZT, the first antiviral agent to treat AIDS.
  • The Names Project displays 1,920 AIDS quilt panels on the Mall in Washington, D.C.
  • Larry Kramer founds the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP) in New York.
  • President Reagan gives first speech on AIDS; 36,000 Americans had been diagnosed with HIV/AIDS and more than 20,000 had died.  He does not mention the word "gay."
  • 138 Minnesotans are diagnosed with AIDS.  70% mortality rate within the same year.

1989

  • After much public protest led by ACT UP, the price of AZT is lowered by 20%.
  • 166 Minnesotans are diagnosed with AIDS.  Less than 30% mortality rate within the same year.

1990

  • Congress passes the Ryan White CARE Act, which funds HIV care and support services for thousands of low-income Americans.
  • Magic Johnson announces he is HIV+

1991

  • The Minnesota Department of Health reports there are 1,052 cases of AIDS in Minnesota.  8 cases are for children under the age of 13.  48% of the cases are people age 30-39.  13% of all cases are reported from Greater Minnesota.

1992

  • The first reports of successful combination antiretroviral therapy are published.

1993

  • President Clinton establishes the white House Office of National AIDS Policy and appoints the first national "AIDS czar."
  • Hope House of St. Croix Valley opens its doors.

1994

  • Rural AIDS Action Network opens its doors.
  • AZT is proven to reduce HIV transmission from mother to infant by up to 70%
  • AIDS becomes the leading cause of death for all Americans between the ages of 25 and 44.

1995

  • The FDA approves the first protease inhibitor.
  • American AIDS Task Force is formally incorporated.

1996

  • Park House opens its doors.

1997

  • AIDS deaths decline by nearly 20% following introduction of combination therapy for treatment of HIV.

1998

  • African-American leaders declare an AIDS "state of emergency" within the African-American community.  In response, Congress creates the Minority HIV/AIDS Initiative.
  • The CDC announces the AIDS death rate dropped 47% from 1996 to 1997.
  • 1 new under-age-13 AIDS case is reported in Minnesota.

1999

  • Minnesota Department of Health reports 3,388 total cases of AIDS.  That number reflects 1,969 deaths.
  • More than 95% of new HIV infections occur in the developing world.  Due to drug prices and poor health care, the majority of people with HIV in the world have no access to treatment.

2000

  • AIDS diagnoses among African-American and Latino gay and bisexual men exceed those for Anglos for the first time.
  • The 13th International Conference on AIDS is held in Durban, South Africa, the first time it is held in a developing country.
  • Globally, nearly 40 million people are living with HIV; 22 million have died.
  • Community pressure brings drug prices down in the developing world.

2002

  • AIDS is the leading cause of death worldwide among those aged 15-59.

2003

  • Inaugural Red Ribbon Ride bicycle fundraiser takes place.  The event raises over $420,000 for nine local AIDS service organizations.
  • During his State of the Union address, President Bush announces the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), a five-year, $15 billion initiative to address HIV/AIDS in hard-hit countries.

2004

  • The second annual Red Ribbon Ride takes place.  The event raises over $430,000 for nine local AIDS service organizations.
  • 307 new cases of HIV were reported in Minnesota.

2005

  • The third annual Red Ribbon Ride takes place.  The event raises over $560,000 for nine local AIDS service organizations.
  • A new case of HIV is reported every 29 hours in Minnesota.
  • The CDC announces that more than 1.1 million Americans are living with HIV, with an estimated 25% unaware of their sero-status.
  • It is estimated that 40 million people are living with HIV/AIDS.  Of these 37.5 million are adults and 2.5 million are children under 15.
  • During 2005, AIDS caused the deaths of an estimated 3.2 million people, including 2.7 million adults and over 513,000 children under 15.

 2006

  • The fourth annual Red Ribbon Ride takes place. The event raises over $650,000 for eight local AIDS service organizations.
  • A new case of HIV is reported every 27 hours in Minnesota
  • 318 new cases of HIV were reported in Minnesota
  • As of December 31, 2006, 5,556 people are known to be living with HIV disease in Minnesota. This represents nearly 30% more individuals living with HIV in 2006 than in 2001.


Thank you to the Minnesota Department of Health and AIDS LifeCycle for portions of this report.

 


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