LA CROSSE, WIS (WKBT) -

Preventing HIV and AIDS is the focus of a program on the UW-La Crosse’s campus December, 2nd.

The Pride Center released balloons to remember those lost to the disease, and provided free HIV and AIDS tests all day.

There were 241 newly diagnosed cases of HIV in Wisconsin last year.

"It's still shocking to me that we see a rise in certain populations still contracting HIV and AIDS and it just reminds me that we have a lot of work to do when it comes to safety and sexuality," says Will VanRoosenbeek, a Director of UW-La Crosse’s Pride Center.

In La Crosse County, there were 5 new cases of HIV last year, and one new case of AIDS.

One way the county works to tries to reduce HIV infections as well as increase access to care for people with the disease is through the AIDS resource center of Wisconsin.

"They will help that person find housing if needed, insurance if needed, help them with their prescription medications because they are quite costly," according to Brenda Lutz-Hanson, a Health Educator.

The county does offer free HIV and AIDS testing. For more information you can call them at 785-9872 or the AIDS Resource Center at 785-9866.