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HIV Prevention in the United States:

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Populations at Higher Risk for HIV: Route of Transmission


While more than half of new HIV infections occur among gay and bisexual men, heterosexuals and injection drug users (IDUs) also continue to be significantly affected by HIV.2

Estimated New HIV Infections by Route of Transmission, 2010
This graphic shows estimated new HIV infections in 2010 by transmission category. Male-to-male sexual contact accounted for 63 percent of new infections; heterosexual contact accounted for 25 percent of new infections; injection drug use (IDU) accounted for 8 percent of new infections; and 3 percent of new HIV infections were among MSM who were also IDUs. (Download High Resolution Version)

Gay and Bisexual Men

Men who have sex with men (MSM) remain the group most heavily affected by HIV in the United States. CDC estimates that MSM represent approximately 4 percent of the male population in the United States 5 but male-to-male sex accounted for more than three-fourths (78 percent) of new HIV infections among men and nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of all new infections in 2010 (29,800). White MSM continue to represent the largest number of new HIV infections among MSM (11,200), followed closely by black MSM (10,600) and Hispanic MSM (6,700).2


Young MSM

Estimated Number of New HIV Infections among MSM aged 13-24, 2008-2010
This bar chart shows that the estimated number of new HIV infections in the United States among men who have sex with men (MSM), ages 13 to 24, increased from 2008 to 2010, by 22 percent. Specifically, the chart shows that there were 7,200 new HIV infections among this group in 2008, and 8,800 new infections in 2010. (Download High Resolution Version)

The number of new infections among the youngest MSM (aged 13-24) increased 22 percent, from 7,200 infections in 2008 to 8,800 in 2010. Young black MSM continue to bear the heaviest burden, accounting for more than half (55 percent) of new infections among young MSM (4,800). In fact, young black MSM now account for more new infections than any other subgroup by race/ethnicity, age, and sex. There was a 12 percent increase in HIV incidence among MSM overall, from 26,700 in 2008 to 29,800 in 2010.2

Heterosexuals

Estimated New Infections among Black Women
This bar chart shows the estimated new HIV infections among black women, in 2008 and 2010. From 2008 to 2010, there was a 21 percent decrease in estimated new infections. Specifically, in 2008, black women accounted for 7,700 new HIV infections and in 2010, black women accounted for 6,100 new HIV infections. (Download High Resolution Version)

Heterosexuals accounted for 25 percent of estimated new HIV infections in 2010 (12,100). About two-thirds (66 percent) of those infected through heterosexual sex were women. The number of new HIV infections among females attributed to heterosexual contact decreased by 18 percent, from 9,800 in 2008 to 8,000 in 2010, largely because of a drop in infections among black heterosexual women. Comparing 2008 to 2010, new HIV infections among black women decreased 21 percent, from 7,700 in 2008 to 6,100 in 2010. While this decline is encouraging, black women continue to be far more affected by HIV than women of other races/ethnicities and account for nearly two-thirds (64 percent) of all new infections among women.2

Injection Drug Users

IDUs represent 8 percent of new HIV infections and 16 percent of people currently living with HIV.1, 2 African Americans account for the greatest numbers of new infections among IDUs.2

Transgender People

Transgender individuals are also heavily affected by HIV. A 2008 review of HIV studies among transgender women found that, on average, 28 percent tested positive for HIV.6

 
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