New figures show that the number of HIV cases in Wales has decreased by 15% since 2018.
The data saw a decrease from 145 new cases in Wales in 2018 to 123 in 2019.
In 2019, the annual diagnoses for men were 86 compared to 117 in 2018.
However, for women, the number of new cases has increased from 28 in 2018 to 37 in 2019.
The new data also shows that HIV late diagnosis is 59% in Wales, compared to 42% in the rest of the UK.
The late diagnoses are likely due to a combination of risk-taking but reluctance to test by people who are reluctant to test due to stigma, failure to diagnose symptoms by clinicians, and lack of understanding of HIV. risk, says Fast Track. Cardiff and Vale.
“We in Wales can be proud of our progress – but the battle is not over yet,” said Stephen Doughty, Member of Parliament for Cardiff South and Penarth and Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group on HIV / AIDS.
“I was very proud that in September this year, Cardiff officially became a Fast Track City – a program aimed at ending HIV transmission by 2030 – an initiative that myself and Health Minister Vaughan Gething have supported since the beginning.
“World AIDS Day gives us the opportunity to resume our struggle and ensure that we do not forget the 38 million people who are still living with HIV and the 32.7 million who have died of HIV / AIDS since 1981”.
Earlier this year, it was announced that the anti-HIV drug, PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis), would become routinely available on the NHS in Wales.
After a successful 3-year trial, the drug was given a green light after zero transmissions among those taking the drug.
Lisa Power, Development Officer for Fast Track Cardiff & Vale, welcomed the news but is still concerned about late diagnoses in Wales.
“We are delighted that the number of gay men diagnosed with HIV in Wales is starting to decline. Once you are diagnosed and treated you cannot pass on HIV and if you do not have HIV there is now a pill – PrEP – to prevent that you get it, ”Lisa told WalesOnline.
“But we still see far too many people being diagnosed late in Wales, when they are already sick, and the number of women being diagnosed, although small, is increasing.
“So our advice to everyone is, if you are sexually active, get tested and if you need it, get treatment. Learn how to protect yourself and others. That way we will meet our national goal of no new HIV infection.” diagnoses by 2030. ”