New HIV diagnoses down in UK gay men, but still high says report
HIV diagnoses of men who have sex with men in the UK have gone down for the first time since the 1990s despite remaining high, says the latest report.
The ‘HIV diagnoses, late diagnoses and numbers accessing treatment and care report’ was recently published by Public Health England.
Gay, bi and MSM made up 3,320, 54% of the total 6,095 new diagnoses.
Although a slight decline on 2014 (3,360), new HIV diagnoses among MSM remained high in 2015.
The report’s authors say this reflects an increase in levels of HIV testing as well as ongoing transmission in this group.
Reducing late HIV diagnosis remains a clinical and public health priority since people diagnosed late have been living with an undiagnosed HIV infection for at least three years and are at risk of premature death and of transmitting the virus to their sexual partners.
In 2015, 39% of adults were diagnosed at late stage of infection; however, rates were lower in MSM (30%).
The only group in which HIV infections increased last year was in people who inject drugs, representing 2% of diagnoses at 210 people.
This was mainly due to a localised outbreak in Glasgow.