The Board of Health (BOH) in Fulton County has premiered its social media campaign, #STOPHIVATL, to combat HIV rates in Georgia’s Fulton Country.

The #STOPHIVATL plan utilizes techniques from social marketing, previously successful prevention campaigns, and guest appearances (Keri Hilson, Miss Lawrence) to spread the word: HIV rates must come down.

Hilson is an HIV/AIDS activist, and a native of Georgia. She has been twice nominated for the Grammy Award. Lawrence, also a Georgia native, is an actor, social advocate, and celebrity hairstylist.

The campaign also aims to raise awareness about new medications that are available. For instance, the Pre-Exposure HIV Prophylaxis (PrEP) has demonstrably prevented HIV, when it is used properly.

The need for education is great. According to the Georgia Department of Public Health, one of six Georgians infected with HIV are unaware that they are HIV-positive. Fulton County has the second-highest rate of new diagnosis in the United States; an estimated 100,000 persons.

According to a press release, “In addition to unveiling campaign visuals and showcasing BOH community partners, the #STOPHIVATL launch will symbolically foster an inter-municipal collaboration and community-wide commitment through a pledge by civic leaders, local celebrities, residents and influencers who share the agency’s desire to effectively eradicate and treat HIV in Fulton County.”

The BOH HIV High Impact Prevention Program formally began on June 21. National HIV Testing Day occurs on June 27. The program urges all at-risk Georgians to get tested.

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