HIV in Appalachia

While historians have largely focused on urban centers such as New York and San Francisco when discussing the impact of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), by 1985 the virus had spread to rural areas such as Appalachia. It is important to highlight the presence of the disease in Appalachia, as those who lived with HIV in this area often had less access to support networks than in urban areas. Despite stigma in regions such as Western North Carolina, service organizations like the Western North Carolina AIDS Project (WNCAP) and Buncombe County Health and Human Services (BCHHS) allowed those who contracted HIV to cope with their diagnosis and live better lives than they might have in large cities where the disease was more prevalent.