Marking World AIDS Day, the NYC Health Department Reports That HIV Infections Continue to Rise Among Young Men Who Have Sex With Men; New Studies Confirm Risky Behaviors
As New York City commemorated World AIDS Day this morning, the Health Department released new data to highlight continuing challenges in the struggle to contain HIV in New York City. The number of new HIV diagnoses has not changed significantly in recent years; the total for 2008 is not yet final but appears very close to the 2007 total of 3,965. Yet the number and proportion of new diagnoses among men who have sex with men (MSM) continues its alarming trend upwards. Preliminary numbers suggest that MSM accounted for 42% of the city’s new HIV diagnoses last year, up from 37% just four years earlier. And for men between 13 and 29 years old, that rising proportion reflects a rapid increase in actual infections — from 551 in 2004 to 706 in the partial count for 2008. To commemorate this continuing tragedy, the City’s Department of Transportation will turn off the 174 necklace bulbs that light up the Brooklyn Bridge at 6 p.m. tonight.
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