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New HIV Infections Plummet 38 Percent in New York City

New HIV Infections Plummet 38 Percent in New York City


Rates drop statewide, too, ans aome activist groups argue that the city's drop in new HIV infections proves that enhanced testing opportunities and prevention programs work. 

Last month, the New York State Department of Health and Mental Hygiene released a report which indicated that, over the past 10 years, the rate of HIV infections decreased by an estimated 38 percent in New York City.


Diane Hepps, the spokesperson for the NYC DOHMH, told health blogger Michael Petrelis, "It is likely that the reasons for this decline are multifaceted and include a broad scale-up of routine HIV screening in NYC and prompt linkage to care, support for staying in are and adhering to HIV treatment, as well a widespread availability of sterile syringes and free condoms, among other factors."


Although New York was slow to address the AIDS epidemic, and more than 25,000 people have died of AIDS there, a handful of organizations like GMHC in the East coast metropolis have pushed programs that offer access to testing, treatment, and assistance for those living with the virus. For many organizations like the AIDS Healthcare Foundation, these statistics are proof that their long-running work is in fact making an impact.


"We are thrilled to see a significant decrease in new HIV infection rates in New York, and in even higher margins in New York City," said Michael Camacho, the New York regional director for AIDS Healthcre Foundation. "There is still a lot of work to be done, especially in marginalized populations such as young gay men of color and transgender communities. We must also ensure HIV-positive clients have access to and adhere to their treatment regimens and continue to take advantage of free HIV testing and condoms, as we see people doing everyday at AHF's Brooklyn Out of the Closet Thrift Store. These statistics prove that the work of organizations like AHF, government agencies, and community groups is making an impact here in New York City, and throughout the state." 


New York City's statewide success was also shown in the drop of infection rates among the three most populous ethnicities: a 42 percent decrease among the black community, 35 percent seen among Hispanic individuals, and a 26 percent infection rate decrease in the white population.

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