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New HIV diagnoses rising in New York City among young men who have sex with men
Date:9/11/2007

HIV infection is on the rise among young men who have sex with men (MSM) in New York City, according to preliminary data from the Health Department. New HIV diagnoses among MSM under age 30 have increased by 33% during the past six years, the agency reported today, from 374 in 2001 to almost 500 in 2006. New diagnoses have doubled among MSM ages 13 to19, while declining by 22% among older MSM. The under-30 group now accounts for 44% of all new diagnoses among MSM in New York City, up from 31% in 2001.

We are very concerned about the increase in HIV among young men who have sex with men, said Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, Health Commissioner for New York City. Were headed in the wrong direction. Unless young men reduce the number of partners they have, and protect themselves and their partners by using condoms more consistently, we will face another wave of suffering and death from HIV and AIDS.

Other local leaders in the fight against AIDS voiced similar concern.

  • Debra Frasier-Howe, president of the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS: These numbers are devastating. After 26 years of AIDS, we cannot drift backward. We must ask all New Yorkers to accept some responsibility for helping our young people protect themselves. Their lives are not dispensable.

  • Tokes Osubu, executive director of Gay Men of African Descent (GMAD): Reversing this trend will require a new commitment to protecting this most underserved population. GMAD will continue to work with other stakeholders to save the lives of our young men. We need an integrated approach across city agencies, social justice organizations and AIDS organizations, and a less judgmental approach by faith institutions.

  • Wendy Stark, interim executive director of the Callen-Lorde Community Health Center: Health care in a supportive and affirming setting can foster healthy choices. We encourage all New Yorkers to identify a primary car
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Contact: Sara Markt
smarkt@health.nyc.gov
212-788-5290
New York City Health Department
Source:Eurekalert

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