Agency recommends universal testing in UKAround the World, Bottom Highlights Thursday, December 8th, 2011
LONDON – The number of people living with HIV in the U.K. reached an estimated 91,500 in 2010, with a quarter of those unaware of their infection, according to recently published Health Protection Agency (HPA) figures.
The report also showed how in 2010, one in five people visiting a sexual health clinic did not accept an HIV test. This comes as the HPA calls for universal testing for HIV, so that no one leaves a clinic without knowing their HIV status.
The HPA’s annual HIV in the U.K. report found 6,660 people were newly diagnosed with HIV in the U.K. The report confirmed that infections probably acquired within the U.K. almost doubled in the last decade from 1,950 in 2001 to 3,640 in 2010 and exceed those acquired abroad – 3,020.
In 2010, more than 3,000 gay men were diagnosed with HIV – the highest ever annual number. One in 20 gay men are now infected with HIV nationally with one in 11 in London.
Dr. Valerie Delpech, consultant epidemiologist and head of HIV surveillance at the HPA, said, “HIV is an infection which can nowadays be treated and those diagnosed promptly can expect to experience similar life expectancy as an individual without the infection. However, we are very concerned that a large number of people in the U.K. are unaware of their HIV status and are diagnosed late.”
The Health Protection Agency is an independent U.K. organization that was set up by the government in 2003 to protect the public from threats to their health from infectious diseases and environmental hazards.
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