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HIV funding cut causes outrage

31st May 2011

HIV prevention groups in London have reacted angrily to the news that their funding is to be reduced by a fifth.

Pound Sign

They said they were "outraged" and "concerned" at the cut in funding.

The Inner North West London Primary Care Trust (PCT), which is responsible for the management of the Pan London HIV Prevention Programme, has cut the budget for 2011/12 by £516,000.

The most recent figures showed that the number of people in London who were infected in the UK has doubled over the past ten years.

The Health Protection Agency said the numbers increased from 660 in 2001 to 1,480 in 2010.

The HPA's epidemiologist for London, Dr Paul Crook, said: "The HIV epidemic in London continues to present a major public health problem."

The number of people in London who have HIV is around 28,000, which equated to around one in every 200 people in the capital between the ages of 15 and 59.

Londoners make up 44% of the total number of people with HIV in England and this rate is triple that of any other region in the country.

Dr Yusef Azad, director of policy and campaigns at the National Aids Trust, said he was "concerned" about the decrease in funding.

"Every year new people become sexually active who haven't heard the safe sex messages."

"We constantly need to renew our safe sex messages, and if we don't have the resources to do that, it's a real problem," he added.

 

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