The WHO has strongly suggested that Gays should opt for antiretroviral medicines in addition to the usual methods of preventing HIV. The WHO has said that men who have sex with other men should consider taking antiretroviral drugs along with the use of Condoms.
In its latest guidelines for AIDS prevention which was released just before the opening of the 20th International AIDS Conference starting in Melbourne this weekend, World Health Organization has estimated that drugs will reduce HIV infections in men who have sex with men by more than 20% to 25% within the next 10 years and in the process will prevent 1 million new AIDS patients.
In a statement the WHO stated that HIV prevalence among Gays are particularly high almost everywhere and there is an urgent need for preventive measures.
Use of Antiretroviral drugs before engaging in Gay sex –a measure which is known as pre-exposure prophylaxis or PrEP is a viable option in preventing AIDS. This was stated by the executive director of the Australian Federation of AIDS Organizations, Rob Lake. Robert Lake said that he is very optimistic about it.
There are three trials for antiretroviral drugs which were started this year in 400 persons who were in a high HIV risk group in Victoria, NSW and Queensland. Mr. Lake said that studies have showed that regular use of drugs gave almost 100% protections against HIV. The method could prove valuable to thousands of Australian who are aware that they are at risk of acquiring AIDS or for people who are in a relationship with HIV positive individuals. There are more than 25000 HIV positive patients in Australia. The drugs can also be taken as a temporary measure in people who going to put themselves briefly at risk by having unprotected sex.
Lake said, ”If you’re going to need it over the weekend, you can start taking it on a Wednesday or Thursday,”
According to the latest data released by University of NSW’s Kirby Institute this week, HIV diagnosis has reached a 20 year high in Australia. In 2013 there were 1235 new HIV patients. This is 705 more than the figures in 1990 when new HIV patients were at their minimum.
According to a report on trends in behavior released by the UNSW’s Centre for Social Research in Health, 35% of men reported that they had unprotected sex with casual partners six months before the survey. With HIV positive men with casual partners this figure was close to 60%.