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The More Things Change...

The More Things Change...


When the AIDS epidemic began in 1981, gay and bisexual men were the demographic group hit hardest by the disease. Twenty-seven years later, very little has changed. New data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that gay and bisexual men continue to make up 53% of the estimated 56,000 new U.S. HIV infections each year and that the transmission rate among young gay black men is rising 14.9% each year. A report by the American Foundation for AIDS Research also shows that men who have sex with men worldwide are 19 times more likely to become infected than the rest of the global population. But despite these shocking figures, country-by-country HIV outreach targeting gay men ranges merely from scarce to nonexistent. According to amfAR, only one in 20 men who have sex with men worldwide have access to HIV prevention programs. In the United States, only four of 49 federally approved prevention interventions target men who have sex with men. 'Perhaps the most dangerous misperception'is that the overall downturn in the HIV epidemic and the increase in rights won by gay men and lesbians in the West are a reflection of the true state of affairs of gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men globally,' said Robert Carr of the Global Forum on MSM and HIV. 'In fact, nothing could be further from the truth.'

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