News Release

Monday, November 26, 2007

National Institute on Drug Abuse Launches Public Service Campaign for Hispanic Youth on the Link between Non-Injection Drugs and HIV

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), marks World AIDS Day on December 1st with the launch of its new, national public service campaign to educate Hispanic teens on the link between non-injection drug use and HIV transmission. The campaign features an innovative television spot blending English and Spanish; a Webisode series that will launch soon on; outdoor, transit and print placements; community events and partnerships.

The new Hispanic spots, "After the Party," build on an earlier English series, but continue the storyline from the point of view of a teen who used drugs and alcohol, engaged in risky behavior and now has HIV. In the new series, a young woman calls on her aunt for comfort and support. Rather than simply translating the original spots that were launched in 2005, NIDA incorporated culturally relevant scenarios that would resonate with the Hispanic audience — in this case, turning to family in times of distress. There are two versions of the new series — one set for Spanish-language television stations and a bilingual set for English-language stations located in markets with large Hispanic populations.

The award-winning Text Message spot, which continues to run on stations across the country, was endorsed by The Ad Council, screened in film festivals, featured in the Dallas Transit system and in Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), and aired in Times Square.

"Drug use and alcohol consumption disrupt the parts of the brain that people use to weigh risks and benefits before making decisions," said NIDA Director Dr. Nora Volkow. "Research has shown that substance use increases the chances of engaging in risky sexual behavior — such as unprotected sex — that can lead to HIV. This campaign urges teens to learn more about the risks of risky behavior and drives them to our Website."

Hispanic youth are potentially at risk for contracting HIV/AIDS. They currently represent 16 percent of the United States teenage population, but over the next decade this diverse and multicultural group is expected to grow by 25 percent. According to 2005 CDC data, Hispanics/Latinos accounted for 18 percent of the 37,367 new HIV/AIDS diagnoses in the 33 states with long-term, confidential name-based HIV reporting.

Materials for NIDA’s Hispanic campaign include bilingual and Spanish television public service ads (PSAs) in 15-, 30- and 60-seconds; Web pages in Spanish on the site; English and Spanish print PSAs, promotional cards, posters, and Web banners. This holiday season, the PSA is running on the CBS Super Screen in New York City’s Times Square and inside New York City buses that travel through areas with large Hispanic populations.

NIDA also has participated in community-based events and collaborations during the phased rollout of the campaign. The Washington, D.C. Department of Health’s HIV/AIDS Administration recently shared NIDA’s campaign materials with community partners through its Youth and HIV/AIDS Prevention Initiative. NIDA also participated in Fiesta DC on September 30th, and the D.C. Metropolitan National Latino AIDS Awareness Day on October 15th.

To arrange an interview with NIDA Director Dr. Nora Volkow about the "Drugs + HIV > Learn the link" campaign, please contact Dorie Hightower at 301-496-1545. For more information about the campaign or to request the TV PSA or other materials, please call Sara Rosario Wilson at 301-594-6145.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse is a component of the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIDA supports most of the world’s research on the health aspects of drug abuse and addiction. The Institute carries out a large variety of programs to inform policy and improve practice. Fact sheets on the health effects of drugs of abuse and information on NIDA research and other activities can be found on the NIDA home page at

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit

NIH…Turning Discovery Into Health®