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According to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for 2001 to 2005 (the latest years available), the number of new cases of HIV infection diagnosed among 15-to-19-year-olds in the United States rose from 1,010 in 2001, held steady for the next three years, then jumped 20 percent in 2005, to 1,213 cases.

For young people aged 20 to 24, cases of new infection have climbed steadily, from 3,184 in 2001 to 3,876 in 2005.

According to E.J. Mundell at HealthDay News, experts say a number of factors may be at play, including the fact that many HIV-infected patients are now being kept healthy with powerful drugs — making AIDS seem like less of a threat to young people than it did in the past.

Hopefully, complacency about this serious threat will not continue.

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