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Thursday 19th September 2019

Fall in condom use

19th February 2013

According to a study carried out by the Health Protection Agency, the increase in HIV infection in gay and bisexual men is linked with fewer of these men using condoms.

hiv spreading

Research by the HPA and universities found an increase of over a quarter (26%) from 1990-2010 in the amount of men who had sex with men without using condoms.

The team looked at information from 1990-2010 and said that the rates of infection in men who have sex with men would be 68% higher if anti-retroviral medication had not been introduced.

The researchers also said if every man who had sex with another man had not used a condom since 2000, the rates of HIV infection would be 400% higher.

Study leader Professor Andrew Phillips, from University College London, said: "By better understanding the driving forces behind the trends we've seen in the past, it will allow us to make informed choices to reduce new HIV infections in the future."

The study's co-author Dr Valerie Delpech, who is head of HIV surveillance at the HPA, said: "Everyone should use a condom when having sex with new or casual partners, until all partners have had a sexual health screen."

"We also encourage men who have sex with men to get an HIV and STI screen at least annually, and every three months if having condomless sex with new or casual partners - and clinicians to take every opportunity to recommend HIV testing to this group." 

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