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International News

Australia: Gay Men Most at Risk of HIV: Report

June 18, 2009

Men who have sex with men (MSM) account for the majority of new HIV diagnoses in Australia, according to a report released today by the Australian Federation of AIDS Organizations. Even so, a growing proportion of HIV cases were acquired through heterosexual intercourse, AFAO's report states.

Between 2003 and 2007, male-to-male sex accounted for 64 percent of newly diagnosed HIV infections. Another 4 percent of cases involved MSM who also used intravenous drugs. HIV was acquired heterosexually in 21 percent of cases during the same timeframe, with 60 percent involving high-risk sex with partners from high-prevalence countries in Southeast Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.

"Over the last few years, Western Australia and Queensland have detected concerning trends among Australians travelling and working in Southeast Asia and Papua New Guinea and becoming infected there, chiefly through unprotected sex between heterosexuals," said Graham Brown, AFAO's president.

During the past decade, New South Wales continued to invest in safe-sex education, and the state's number of HIV cases has stabilized, Brown noted. Meanwhile, HIV diagnoses grew 130 percent during the same period in Victoria, and Queensland recorded a 50 percent growth in HIV.

For more information about AFAO's report, visit

Back to other news for June 2009

Adapted from:
Australian Associated Press

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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
See Also
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