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Dip In New HIV Cases; Efforts Still Required

While there is no doubt that HIV has become a contentious issue across the world, a recent report by the AIDS Epidemiology Group at the University of Otago has sent a sigh of relief in the society by claiming that there is a dip in the new HIV diagnosis. Such a drop was not witnessed in the early 2000s, but this time it has sent warm signals in the society that efforts made to address the issue are finally giving out results.\n

Avatar of Alessia Valenza

11th March 2012 09:54

Alessia Valenza | ILGA Oceania

"New HIV diagnoses for gay and bisexual men in New Zealand have been reduced by around a third and this is very encouraging", said Shaun Robinson, the NZAF Executive Director. The report showed that in 2011, there were as many as 59 gay and bisexual men identified with HIV and 28 people were tested positive via heterosexual transmission.

Though the drop has been appreciated by one and all, there is a need to look a step ahead that there were many who were not tested for the same instead. The report unveils that as many as 34% of the gay and bisexual men have crossed the stage where treatment should have been started, thereby, making it clear that there is need to make such communities aware about the developments made in the field of HIV so that they can come forward not just to get tested but to take medical care of the same at the right time.

While Shaun Robinson is of the view that this report reaffirms that their hard work has given the deserving results, concrete steps are still required to be taken in the context. Considering the need of consistent efforts, there would be distribution of 500,000 condoms and lube packs this year so that HIV rate could be controlled further, as complacency at this stage could push the situation to back where it was earlier.