The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) just released shocking new data on the HIV epidemic in the United States stating that there's been an enormous increase in new HIV infections among gay men and Afro Americans. According to the research, the number of HIV infections among men who have sex with men (MSM) has increased by 17% -and we're not talking about a period of 15 years, this number applies to just the last 4 years! President Obama rightly acknowledges these statistics as being alarming and proposed a new $28 million initiative in his 2011 budget to expand HIV prevention in the US. Of course HIV isn't only affecting -or should we say infecting- gay men: a large group of Afro Americans and Hispanics - including many young women- are suffering too. For instance, during the same period (2005-2008) HIV diagnoses increased by approximately 12% among African Americans. The United States are of course not the only country dealing with these facts: the Scientific Institute of Public Health of Belgium earlier this week reported 1.115 new cases of HIV in 2009 and this is the highest rate since the outbreak of the epidemic in the 80's. Again we're seeing the same trend: more HIV infections among gay & bisexual men. In 2002 only 23% of new infections were among gay men, while in 2009 46% of seropositives are homosexual men. Shocking numbers that make it clear that our work isn't finished yet. This calls for action!
Source: Gazet van Antwerpen, GMHC