New HIV diagnoses down 17 per cent in 2017

Annual HIV data shows new diagnoses of HIV have fallen for the second year in a row, decreasing by 17 per cent from 5,280 in 2016 to 4,363 in 2017. This is the lowest level since 2000.

The reduction was largely driven by a decline in new diagnoses among gay and bisexual men, which fell by 17% compared to 2016 and by 31 per cent compared to 2015. The decrease was due to the high uptake of HIV testing in this group.

Increased uptake of anti-retroviral therapy (ART), which keep the level of HIV in the body low and help prevent it being passed on, also significantly contributed to the decline.

New HIV diagnoses in black African and Caribbean heterosexuals have been steadily decreasing over the past 10 years. For the first time, a UK-wide fall was also seen in new diagnoses in heterosexuals from other ethnicities, with a drop of 20 per cent in 2017 when previously they had remained stable at around 1,000 per year.

Epidemiological data on new HIV diagnoses and people receiving HIV care can be found in the PHE health protection report and annual HIV data tables.

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