The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention released new data on the changes in HIV infections in the USA.
The report, which was released on Thursday, focused on data from the 235,000 new gay and bisexual men diagnosed with HIV between 2008 and 2016. The study was focused on the rate of new infections and categorized the data by age group and U.S. region.
The results found that 45 percent of the 235,000 gay and bisexual men diagnosed HIV within that time were aged 13-29. Meanwhile, 43 percent were 30-49 and 12 were 50 or over.
Other results from the data were:
- There was a 3 percent increase per year for new HIV diagnoses of men aged 12-29.
- Meanwhile, 30-49-year-olds decreased by 4 percent in diagnoses each year.
- Young men of color are still greatly affected by HIV. Black men make up half of the 13-29 age bracket of new HIV diagnoses in the recorded time span. Latinos account for another quarter.
Again, the data also focused on US region and not just age groups. The results found that the US South is the most effected region. 9 out of the 10 states with the highest percentages of 13-29-year-olds living with HIV are in the South.
In addition, the state of Georgia has specifically seen a rise in HIV rates (a fact we and Georgians have already noted).
In 2008, Georgia had 17,290 gay and bisexual men living with HIV. By 2015, the number had skyrocketed to 29,000. This now makes Georgia the state with the fifth-highest number of HIV-positive gay and bisexual men.
The CDC has already shared earlier this year that they think health experts need to reach out to Southern Gay Black men, and this new report strengthens that thought.
“To avert the most infections and improve health outcomes, gay and bisexual males at risk for HIV infection should be tested at least once a year, and, if positive, linked to and retained in HIV medical care to achieve viral suppression,” said Dr. Andrew Mitsch from the CDC’s Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention to Project Q.
“Those testing negative should be provided HIV prevention services, including pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP," he added.