Aids still devastates


Chris Beyrer | Twitter | 16263ga

Gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men continue to have disproportionately high burdens of HIV infection in countries of low, middle and high income around the world, according to the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health who publish their findings in The Lancet tomorrow.

Four years ago, the same group of researchers issued a call to action, laying out an ambitious plan to curtail HIV epidemics in gay men, setting targets for policy reform, funding and improvement in effective HIV prevention and treatment services, including expanded access to pre-exposure prophylaxis which has been highly effective in dramatically reducing transmission among this population.

“While HIV rates have flattened overall in recent years, we’re really concerned that the HIV epidemic is continuing among gay men and we’re going in the wrong direction,” says study leader Chris Beyrer, MD, MPH, the Desmond M. Tutu Professor of Public Health and Human Rights at the Bloomberg School and president of the International AIDS Society. “It’s a tragic situation and it’s painful that the history of AIDS is looking like its future, but that’s actually where we are. But the first step in taking on a problem is recognizing and articulating it and we’ve really done that here….The global epidemic of HIV in gay men is ongoing and efforts to address it remain insufficient,” he says. “This must change if we are ever to ever truly achieve an AIDS-free generation.”