New Reports Show Record Low HIV Cases In Australia

Written by Staff Writers
Category: Agenda Published: Thursday, 04 July 2019 09:32

New figures from 2018 have revealed the lowest number of new HIV infections since 2001.

The numbers, released by The Kirby Institute, found only 835 new cases diagnosed last year… This is a decline of 23 per cent nationally over the last five years.

"This reduction is very encouraging," Professor Rebecca Guy, head of the Kirby Institute's Surveillance, Evaluation and Research Program says.

"Although we've seen reductions in recent years in some Australian states, in 2018 we saw significant reductions at a national level."

While the number of new cases among heterosexual Australians, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people has remained generally unchanged, diagnoses among gay and bisexual men have reduced by 30 per cent over the past five years.

Seems like the increased uptake of PrEP (a pill taken daily to prevent the transmission of HIV) is working.

"We're really quite pleased with how many gay and bisexual men have embraced PrEP as a way to protect themselves from HIV," Andrew Grulich, head of the HIV epidemiology and prevention programme at the Kirby Institute says.

"However, for declines to continue at this impressive rate, PrEP coverage needs to be significantly higher."

You heard the man! Let's continue fighting and looking after ourselves. Get tested, take PrEP, spread the word, and be aware.

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