CDC to Stop Using 'Unprotected Sex' for 'Sex Without Condoms'

Published: February 6, 2014

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has agreed to reevaluate the language it uses regarding HIV and men who have sex with men (MSM), according to an HIV Prevention Justice Alliance (HIV PJA) statement. The decision is in response to an open letter from a coalition of advocates led by HIV PJA. The letter not only asked the CDC to reevaluate HIV MSM language, but also related methods and recommendations. In particular, the CDC will no longer use the term “unprotected sex” as “sex without condoms.” The open letter argues that not all condomless sex occurs “in an environment of heightened HIV risk.” As a result, the open letter urges more precise language. The CDC also agreed to work with the coalition to address the other concerns in the letter. 

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