New HIV Infections Decline in San Francisco
April 4, 2011
This year marks a decade-long retreat in new HIV cases in San Francisco. Between 2001 and 2011 the city has witnessed a steady decline in new infections. San Francisco health researchers estimate there are 736 new HIV infections each year, according to the latest HIV Consensus Estimates. The city's HIV incidence rate now stands at 0.09%, a 30.8% reduction in the rate since 2006. The city has also seen a 24.6% reduction in the number of cases over the last five years.
Dr. Grant Colfax, the city's director of HIV prevention, said health officials remain "cautiously optimistic" that HIV cases are in decline. "We can't conclusively make the case that HIV rates are declining. We are still in an endemic state at this point," said Colfax. "There is still much work yet to go."
The majority of San Francisco's new HIV cases remain among men who have sex with men. It is estimated that 585 gay and bisexual men will become HIV-positive this year, most of whom are likely to be in their 30s. Another 49 gay and bisexual men who use injection drugs are expected to contract HIV this year. In total, there are an estimated 15,873 gay and bisexual men living with HIV in the city.
Health officials believe a variety of factors are leading to the continued downward trend. Among those factors are:
The total number of new cases among straight men and women, including injection drug users, is estimated at 69. There are 2,012 heterosexual people living with HIV in the city.
There are 583 transgender women now living there with HIV. Overall, the number of people living with HIV in San Francisco is now believed to be 18,576, which results in an HIV prevalence rate of 2.27%.
This article was provided by Test Positive Aware Network. It is a part of the publication Positively Aware. Visit TPAN's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
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