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Sunday 27th May 2018

St Ives sees rise in HIV cases

18th May 2006

West Cornwall Primary Care Trust has been criticised for its handling of an apparent surge in HIV cases in St Ives.

At the beginning of May, the PCT warned that there may be up to 10 new cases in the area involving heterosexuals between 20 and 50 years old. It is thought that one person has been linked with many of the identified cases.

The PCT subsequently urged people who were worried they might be infected to come forward for testing. Additional testing facilities have been established and anyone having unprotected sex in the previous eight years was encouraged to get checked. A phone helpline was set up which took 200 calls in the first week.

The appeal was made after it proved impossible to identify and trace all of the previous sexual partners of the individuals concerned. However, the National Aids Trust (NAT) accused the PCT of "encouraging rumour, unfounded speculation, and attempts to identify individuals as HIV positive".

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