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Doubling of UK HIV rate prompts routine testing call

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kevinkelleher
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Doubling of UK HIV rate prompts routine testing call
Posted on: March 23 2011, 10:27 am

A doubling of new HIV infections in the UK in the past decade is leading experts to tell GPs to offer testing to all adult male patients in some areas.

Health Protection Agency data shows new UK-acquired cases rose from just under 2,000 in 2001 to nearly 3,800 in 2010.

Many of these new cases are among men who have sex with men and it is this group that campaigners hope to target.

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has launched new guidelines for doctors in England.
http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/PH34

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-12817564
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kevinkelleher
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UK-acquired HIV nearly doubles in ten years - HPA reports
Reply #1 on: March 23 2011, 12:18 pm

New diagnoses for people infected with HIV in the UK almost doubled over the past decade, (from 1,950 in 2001 to 3,780 in 2010) according to new figures released today by the Health Protection Agency (HPA). If these 3,780 UK-acquired HIV cases in 2010 had been prevented, over 32 million annually or 1.2 billion over a lifetime in costs would have been saved.

Men who have sex with men remain the group most at risk of becoming infected with HIV in the UK and new diagnoses in this group alone have increased by 70 per cent in the past 10 years rising from 1,810 in 2001 to 3,080 in 2010.

Late diagnosis continues to severely affect the health outcomes of people with HIV. On average, of all those who die from HIV infection every year, three out of five are diagnosed late - that is after the point their treatment should have begun.

New guidance released today by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence recommends increased testing of HIV in key risk groups. In the UK black Africans and men who have sex with men are most at risk of becoming infected with HIV. Increased testing will encourage early diagnosis in these groups.

Dr Valerie Delpech, head of HIV surveillance at the HPA said:

"An HIV test should be routinely offered and recommended to all general medical admissions to hospital in high prevalence areas (people with diagnosed HIV infection greater than 2 per 1,000 aged 15-59 years).  Similarly, testing new registrants in primary care should be implemented in high prevalence areas although the cost implications may be greater in this setting where there may be a greater reliance on point of care tests. These expanded HIV testing policies should be prioritised for implementation as soon as possible.

"HIV is an extremely serious infection. There are excellent treatment options available nowadays but these are only at their most effective if the infection is diagnosed early, before symptoms appear. This is a challenge as most individuals will not be aware of their infection until they get tested for HIV. Testing for the infection must be increased in order to catch the infection as early as possible.

Read more http://www.hpa.org.uk/web/HPAweb&HPAwebStandard/HPAweb_C/1296683749074
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