September 27, 2010 is National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NGMHAAD)—a day to not only bring attention to and promote understanding of the disproportionate burden of HIV among gay and bisexual men, but also to recommit ourselves to the fight to end this devastating epidemic.
The rate of new HIV infection in the U.S. is increasing among only one risk group: gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM). More than half (57%) of those with new HIV infections in the U.S. each year and more than half (53%) of people living with HIV in the U.S. are gay or bisexual men or MSM who inject drugs. Vast disparities in infection rates exist across racial, ethnic, geographic, and age groups, and barriers to HIV testing result in a high proportion of infected men who are not aware of their infection.
This year’s NGMHAAD comes after a new CDC study, released yesterday in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR), that reminds us why refocusing our attention on HIV prevention and treatment among gay and bisexual men is critical. The study reports on survey and HIV test results from 8,153 MSM in 21 major U.S. cities participating in the 2008 National HIV Behavioral Surveillance System (NHBS) and found:
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