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posted Friday, November 20, 2020 - Volume 48 Issue 47
As COVID-19 soars, AHF urges "Don't Share Air" in new national billboard campaign
Section One
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As COVID-19 soars, AHF urges "Don't Share Air" in new national billboard campaign

LOS ANGELES (November 12, 2020) - As rates of COVID-19 continue to skyrocket in the US - with a reported 60,000 hospitalized as of earlier this week and more than 100,000 new infections being logged daily - the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) is rolling out an urgent new nationwide public service billboard and transit advertising campaign headlined and hash-tagged "#DontShareAir." The goal is to encourage mask use and social distancing as a means to reduce new infections of the deadly novel coronavirus that has wreaked humanitarian and economic devastation across the country and around the globe.

Earlier this week, CNN reported "The US has averaged 108,737 new COVID-19 cases a day over the past week - a record high, according to Johns Hopkins."

Since the beginning of the pandemic, COVID-19 has infected 59.1 million people globally and claimed over 1.3 million lives. The devastating effects of the pandemic on all aspects of human activity cannot be understated. The impact of the virus on public health, the global economy, politics, and civic institutions will likely be felt for generations. Amid this crisis, the possibility of an effective vaccine for COVID-19 holds a hopeful promise for a gradual end to the pandemic. However, until that time, our best course of action is to deploy simple yet effective measures like mask use and social distancing to prevent new infections.

Over the past few weeks from late October to early November "#DontShareAir" billboards, bulletins, bus bench ads, interior cards, and/or transit ads have [been] posted in California (Los Angeles), Florida (Ft. Lauderdale, Orlando, Pensacola, South Beach/Miami, and St, Petersburg), Georgia (Atlanta), Illinois (Chicago), Louisiana (Baton Rouge), Maryland (Baltimore), Mississippi (Jackson), Ohio (Cleveland and Columbus), Pennsylvania (Philadelphia), Texas (Dallas), and Washington State (Seattle).

The artwork for the AHF's "#DontShareAir" public service message looks somewhat like a modernist or abstract art painting. It features highly stylized graphic silhouettes of the heads of two individuals facing each other but standing a few feet apart. The hashtag "#DontShareAir" appears to spill from the mouth of one, together with thousands of tiny droplets that appear to make their way across the space toward the second silhouetted face at the other end of the billboard, suggesting the coronavirus on the move.

"As the numbers of new infections, hospitalizations, and deaths due to COVID continue to climb and we head into our first full winter with the coronavirus, the AHF is seeking to reinforce prudent public health messaging and practices with this new '#DontShareAir' awareness campaign," said Michael Weinstein, president of the AHF. "We want to strongly encourage the general public to get back to basics and remind people that masks and social distancing are an effective, inexpensive - and often free - prevention tool."

The AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the largest global AIDS organization, currently provides medical care and/or services to over 1.4 million individuals in 45 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/the Caribbean, the Asia/Pacific region, and Eastern Europe. To learn more about the AHF, go to www.aidshealth.org, find us at www.facebook.com/aidshealth, and follow us: @aidshealthcare.

Courtesy of the AHF

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