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Offline rangerrebew

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WHO warns HIV 'exploding' among gay men, urges preventive drugs



11 Jul 2014

AFP / Diptendu Dutta




Indian volunteers and members of the West Bengal Voluntary Health Association (WBVHA) light candles in the shape of a red ribbon during the closing ceremony of an AIDS awareness campaign in Siliguri on December 2, 2013

HIV infections are rising among gay men in many parts of the world, the World Health Organization warned Friday, urging all men who have sex with men to take antiretroviral drugs to prevent infection.

"We are seeing exploding epidemics," warned Gottfried Hirnschall, who heads WHO's HIV department.

Infection rates are rising again among men who have sex with men -- the group at the epicentre of AIDS pandemic when it first emerged 33 years ago, he told reporters in Geneva.

While images of skeletal men dying of AIDS in the 1980s pushed the world to act, a younger generation that has grown up among new treatments that make it possible to live with HIV are less focused on the disease, he suggested.

Today, this group is 19 times more likely than the general population to be infected by HIV, Hirnschall said.

In Bangkok for instance, the incidence of HIV among men who have sex with men stands at 5.7 percent, compared to less than 1.0 percent for the overall population, he said.





AFP / Tony Karumba




A picture taken in Nairobi on May 9, 2013 shows a billboard promoting the use of condoms by a US-based Catholic group calling itself "Catholics for choice"

In its new recommendations for combatting the HIV/AIDS pandemic, published Friday, the UN health agency therefore for the first time "strongly recommends men who have sex with men consider taking antiretroviral medicines as an additional method of preventing HIV infection".

US authorities made the same recommendation in May.

Taking pre-exposure prophylaxis medication, for instance as a single daily pill combining two antiretrovirals, in addition to using condoms, has been estimated to cut HIV incidence among such men by 20-25 percent, WHO said, stressing that this could avert "up to one million new infections among this group over 10 years".

The new guidelines also focus on other high-risk groups, pointing out that men who have sex with men, transgender people, prisoners, people who inject drugs and sex workers together account for about half of all new HIV infections worldwide.

- Putting overall progress at risk -

At the same time, they are often the very groups who have least access to healthcare services, with criminalisation and stigma often dissuading them from seeking help even when it is available.





AFP / Brendan Smialowski




A volunteer with AIDS Healthcare Foundation waits for cars to stop to hand out free condoms on May 24, 2013 in Washington

When people fear seeking health care services it "will inevitably lead to more infections in those communities," Rachel Baggaley, of the WHO's HIV department, told reporters.

Globally, transgender women and injecting drug users, for instance, are around 50 times more likely than the general population to contract HIV, while sex workers have a 14-fold higher chance of getting infected, WHO said.

The world has overall been making great strides in tackling HIV, with the number of new infections plunging by a third between 2001 and 2012, when 2.3 million people contracted the virus.

And by the end of 2013, some 13 million people with HIV were receiving antiretroviral treatment, dramatically reducing the number of people dying from AIDS.

"Progress is however uneven," Hirnschall said, warning that failing to address the still sky-high HIV incidence among certain groups was putting the overall battle against the deadly disease at risk.

Most countries focus the lion's share of their attention on fighting HIV infections among the general populations, paying relatively little attention to the most high-risk groups.

This is especially true in sub-Saharan Africa, which is home to 71 percent of the some 35.3 million people worldwide living with HIV, the expert said.

Hirnschall stressed that tackling infections among the most at risk should be a general concern.

"None of these people live in isolation," he said, pointing out that "sex workers and their clients have husbands, wives and partners. Some inject drugs. Many have children."

Decriminalising and destigmatising these groups would greatly help bring down HIV infections among them, WHO said.

Promoting condom use, wide-spread voluntary HIV testing, treating at-risk individuals with antiretrovirals, voluntary male circumcision and needle exchange programmes figure among the other WHO recommendations for battling the disease.

http://www.afp.com/en/news/who-warns-hiv-exploding-among-gay-men-urges-preventive-drugs
« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 11:18:40 AM by rangerrebew »
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Offline mountaineer

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Re: WHO warns HIV 'exploding' among gay men, urges preventive drugs
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2014, 11:45:19 AM »
Quote
Promoting condom use, wide-spread voluntary HIV testing, treating at-risk individuals with antiretrovirals, voluntary male circumcision and needle exchange programmes figure among the other WHO recommendations for battling the disease.
But never ever suggest homosexuals cease engaging in anal intercourse!   :pondering:
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Offline GourmetDan

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Re: WHO warns HIV 'exploding' among gay men, urges preventive drugs
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2014, 11:50:13 AM »

At the same time, gays push to eliminate the blood donation ban...

Friends And Allies Of Gay Men Donate Blood In Light Of Ban

"The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of the fool to the left." - Ecclesiastes 10:2

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Online flowers

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Re: WHO warns HIV 'exploding' among gay men, urges preventive drugs
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2014, 12:49:27 PM »
At the same time, gays push to eliminate the blood donation ban...

Friends And Allies Of Gay Men Donate Blood In Light Of Ban
That will happen by the end of obies term.


Online jmyrlefuller

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Re: WHO warns HIV 'exploding' among gay men, urges preventive drugs
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2014, 05:24:51 PM »
Quote
While images of skeletal men dying of AIDS in the 1980s pushed the world to act, a younger generation that has grown up among new treatments that make it possible to live with HIV are less focused on the disease
This.

You want to take a look at the cause of moral collapse in western civilizations? This is a great place to start.

Back in the early 1980s, people witnessed the consequences of sodomy. I'd venture to say that is part of how the Moral Majority caught on so well (admittedly it is before my time so I'm conjecturing here). Everyone saw the consequences of bad behavior. My generation never saw that firsthand. In fact, they have seen nothing but a mass denial campaign trying to obfuscate the fact that that particular act is one of the worst ways of spreading disease that there is.

No longer is the picture associated with HIV or AIDS the seedy bathhouses in Greenwich Village. Now, it's Magic Johnson-- who has no outward symptoms of the disease two decades later. Happy, successful, and ridiculously rich, too. (Of course he was the one who got it some other way we still don't know.)
« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 05:26:55 PM by jmyrlefuller »
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Offline Atomic Cow

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Re: WHO warns HIV 'exploding' among gay men, urges preventive drugs
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2014, 08:35:03 PM »
I sometimes wonder if Magic Johnson even has it.
"...And these atomic bombs which science burst upon the world that night were strange, even to the men who used them."  H. G. Wells, The World Set Free, 1914

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