Number of HIV patients continues to rise

Number of HIV patients continues to rise / Health News

Nearly 80,000 people in Germany live with HIV / AIDS


The number of people living with HIV / AIDS in Germany has risen steadily since the mid-1990s, reports the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) in a recent press release on the occasion of World AIDS Day on the first of December. Reason for the steadily increasing total number of people living with HIV in Germany are also the improved treatment options. Every year, fewer people die of AIDS than people newly infected.

According to estimates by the RKI, around 78,000 people with HIV / AIDS are living in Germany at the end of 2012. The majority of those affected - around 50,000 people - receive appropriate treatment. Of the remaining 28,000 infected persons, around half of their illnesses are not aware at all, according to the estimates of the RKI in its current Epidemiological Bulletin. A further increase in those affected is also expected for the coming years, as the number of new infections with around 3,400 affected persons is well above the number of HIV deaths (around 550 in 2011).

Slight increase in new HIV infections in the past year
In a press release on the World AIDS Day, the Robert Koch Institute reports a continuous increase in the number of people living with HIV in Germany since the mid-1990s. Overall, the number of new HIV infections has stagnated at an almost constant level since the beginning of the last decade since 2004/2005. The RKI estimates that there will be around 3,400 new HIV infections in 2012. The most affected „Men who have sex with men.“ At the end of the 1990s, they had a significant increase in new infections. While the number of new infections in this risk group declined slightly between 2006 and 2010, the RKI has registered a renewed increase in the number of new infections since 2011, which is „in connection with the significant increase in the spread of further sexually transmitted infections“ is brought. Thus, for example, the venereal disease syphilis, which has also been on the increase in this country since 2010, favors an infection with HIV. The RKI estimates that „Of the 78,000 HIV-infected people in Germany, around 51,000 are men who have sex with men.“

HIV prevention continues to be a high priority
According to RKI President Reinhard Burger, the numbers of new HIV infections, deaths and the total number affected are clear, „that efforts to prevent infection continue to require high priority and adequate funding.“ In this context, a quick diagnosis and treatment of syphilis and other sexually transmitted infections that promote infection with HIV is urgently required. However, the RKI acknowledged that current data on new HIV infections are estimates only and should not be confused with the reported number of new HIV diagnoses. Also be „the current estimate is not directly comparable to the estimates from previous years, as each new model gives new values ​​due to partly changed assumptions and methods over the whole course of time.“ For example, the estimates for World AIDS Day last year showed a slight decline in new HIV infections in Germany, which had to be corrected on the basis of the current calculations. In fact, a renewed slight increase in new HIV infections was observed in the second half of 2011, reports the RKI. (Fp)

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Image: Gerd Altmann,