HIV levels reach record high in UK

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A RECORD number of people in the UK are living with HIV – nearly 100,000, new figures show.

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) said there were about 96,000 people who have the virus.

But health officials warned that a quarter of people who have the human immuno-
deficiency virus are not aware they have been infected.

There were 6,280 people 
diagnosed with HIV in 2011, the HPA said.

Nearly half of all diagnoses in 2011 were acquired heterosexually. Of these, more than half were probably acquired in the UK, compared with only 27 per cent in 2002, according to the HPA report.

New diagnoses among gay men reached an all-time high in 2011, with 3,010 men discovering they were infected.

The HPA said that one in 20 men who have sex with men in the UK now has HIV, and the figure soars to nearly one in 12 
in London.

Black African people are 
also at a higher risk, the HPA said, with 37 per 1,000 living with the infection. Overall HIV prevalence in the UK was 1.5 per 1,000 people.