Nearly 100,000 people are living with HIV in the UK
Did you know that it is 30 years since the first cases of Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) were reported?
By the end of 2011 there were around 96,000 people living with HIV in the UK and a 25% of them are undiagnosed, meaning that 25% do not know they have HIV.
6280 people were newly diagnosed with HIV in 2011. Nealy 50% of infections were acquired heterosexually and at least half of these were probably accquired in the UK (compared to only 27% in 2002).
An estimated 3010 of the newly diagnosed infections were made in men who have sex with men. This is highest number ever reported in a year.
Sexual Health Promotion Team (Solent NHS) have developed a number of real life stories of people whose lives have been affected by HIV.
Check out the campaign and stories at HIV LIVES
The HIV LIVES website also has information on HIV testing, finding local clinics and how to order free condoms from local services in Hampshire.
How much do you know about HIV?
If you’re having unprotected sex then you may find out more than you want to know.
HIV can be passed on through:
unprotected sex (sex without a condom); through infected blood, semen, vaginal fluid
- sharing infected needles and works
- from an HIV positive mother to her child during pregnancy, child birth or breastfeeding
Anybody can become infected with HIV however men who have sex with men and people who have sexual partners from sub-Saharan Africa are most at risk and are encouraged to be tested for HIV on a regular basis.
There is no cure for HIV and no vaccine to prevent you from getting it.
A quarter of people with HIV in the UK don’t know they have it and many people diagnosed with this virus will be diagnosed late – AFTER the point at which they should have started treatment.
However, if you have had unprotected sex and are worried about HIV then a quick and simple test can be done at any of Hampshire’s sexual health clinics (GUM) and you can also request a test at your GP surgery.
REMEMBER – the earlier the diagnosis, the greater chance you have of living a longer and healthier life.
The only way to find out if you’ve got HIV is to be tested for it. You can ask your GP for an HIV test or attend a local GUM / sexual health clinic. Click here to find out more information about sexual health and to find out where your nearest clinic is or call 0300 300 2016.
Alternatively, you can either call ‘THT Direct’ on 0808 802 1221 Monday to Friday 10am – 10pm or go to their website –www.tht.org.uk for information, support and advice on HIV and sexual health.
Positive Action is a local organisation that provides emotional and practical support for individuals and families living in Hampshire, Portsmouth, Southampton & Surrey who have been affected by HIV. Visit the Positive Action website to find out more their support.
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