UW Health recognizes World AIDS Day through ribbon tribute

UW Health members placed more than 800 red ribbons on Bascom Hall to mark World AIDS Day.
Published: Dec. 1, 2021 at 9:05 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - To recognize World AIDS Day, UW Health placed more than 800 red ribbons at Bascom Hall on UW-Madison’s campus to represent each person in Dane County living with HIV.

UW Health HIV Care and Prevention Program patient and community engagement specialist Chris Chapman said the display is a reminder to the community that HIV is something many people’s friends and neighbors manage every day.

“They are just people,” Chapman said. “They are our friends our parents, our neighbors, our coworkers. And they need support just like everybody else does.”

This is the 33rd World AIDS Day, which takes place on Dec. 1 of every year to show support with those living with HIV and those who have died from it.

According to the Department of Health Services, 208 people in Wisconsin were newly diagnosed with HIV in 2020. The data indicate new HIV diagnoses were identified in Milwaukee, Dane and Brown counties.

Dr. Dawd Siraj, an infectious disease and HIV physician at UW Health, said HIV still impacts thousands of people in Wisconsin every year.

“The work to end this epidemic is far from over,” said Dr. Siraj.

UW Health also held a Community Bingo event from 6-7 p.m. on Dec. 1 for players to remember and honor loved ones.

A Spanish-language panel with a Q&A section focused on HIV in the Latinx community will be held from 6-7 p.m. on Dec. 2.

There will also be a discussion about intersectional stigma of HIV and its sexual, reproductive and mental health impacts from 8-9 a.m. on Dec. 3. It features Dr. Carmen Logie, an associate professor at University of Toronto and a Canada Research chair in Global Health Equity and Social Justice with Marginalized Populations.

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