Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


NZ's 2008 HIV statistics alarming

New Zealand's 2008 HIV statistics alarming says Tariana Turia
Hon Tariana Turia, Associate Minister of Health

20 March 2009

The latest annual HIV statistics report shows that 184 people were diagnosed with HIV infection last year, the highest number of diagnoses ever in New Zealand.

“This is an alarming increase, which must motivate us all to look critically at the reasons why the rate of HIV infections continue to rise” said Mrs Turia.

Much of the 2008 increase has been due to the relatively high level of infection occurring amongst men who have sex with other men. Overall, the rate of HIV infections through homosexual contact continues to be higher than that through heterosexual contact.

Last year, about 70% of HIV infections that occurred in New Zealand were diagnosed amongst men having sex with other men. Rising rates of infections through homosexual contact have also been observed in Australia, Canada, the United States and Western European countries in recent years.

“I understand that other data analysis by the AIDS Epidemiology Group shows that in the data for men who have sex with men, there is a disproportionate rate of Maori and Pasifika men presenting as “late testers” than European men” said Mrs Turia. The rate for Maori ‘late testers’ was 40.6%; for Pacific 28.6% and for European 21.1%.
“This data is hugely concerning, and I will be asking officials to provide me with more information about these trends, as a matter of some urgency” said Mrs Turia.

“For infections that occur in New Zealand, compared to New Zealand European women, women of ‘other’ ethnic groups, Pasifika and Maori women also appear to be at greater risk when we analyse the rise in diagnosis rate”.

"The Government has been working over the years with several organisations to reduce the incidence of HIV/AIDS," Associate Health Minister Tariana Turia said.

She cited the fact that the Ministry has been funding the New Zealand AIDS Foundation since 1985 to develop and implement initiatives to reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS in high-risk populations, particularly men having sex with other men.

“A critical aspect in addressing HIV prevention, must be having effective health promotion programmes amongst key target populations," she added.

The number of people diagnosed with HIV has fluctuated over the past four years - 2005 (183 people), 2006 (177), 2007 (156) and 2008 (184). Detailed information on these trends is available in the latest issue of AIDS - New Zealand newsletter published by the AIDS Epidemiology Group of the University of Otago.

The annual statistics report also showed that most people who acquired the infection through heterosexual contact were infected overseas.

The prevalence of HIV infection in the New Zealand population is very low compared to other countries.

From 1985 to 2008, some 3000 people have been diagnosed with HIV and about a thousand are recorded to have developed AIDS.


Background:

The Ministry of Health contracts for a range of HIV and AIDS-related services, including health promotion and promotion of responsible sexual behaviour to minimise the incidence of HIV and AIDS, prevention and awareness activities, surveillance services, programmes for refugees and new immigrants and independent HIV confirmatory testing services.

In 2007, the Ministry accepted the recommendations from its AIDS Medical and Technical Advisory Committee with regard to HIV testing of adults in health care settings. These recommendations are broadly supported by professional bodies and the NZ AIDS Foundation.

Early diagnosis enables people to gain the benefits of early treatment and adopt safe sex practices. This also helps control the spread of HIV infection.

The Ministry also funds several organisations providing specialised programmes targeted at specific communities:
• New Zealand AIDS Foundation - delivers community education programmes targeting men having sex with men, health promotion, supporting those with HIV/AIDS (Positive Health Programme) and other HIV/AIDS related services.
• Needle Exchange New Zealand - administers the Needle and Syringe Exchange Programme along with regional programmes across the country.
• New Zealand Prostitutes Collective - provides health promotion and support services for sex workers.
• New Zealand Family Planning Association - provides sexual and reproductive services including prevention campaigns primarily targeting heterosexual women and men.

http://www.moh.govt.nz

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Labour's 'Future Of Work': Major Reform Of Careers And Apprenticeships

The next Labour Government will transform careers advice in high schools to ensure every student has a personalised career plan, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

State Investments Management: Treasury Likes IRD, Not Education Or Corrections

The Inland Revenue Department has scored an 'A' in the first tranche of the Treasury's investor confidence rating for state agencies that manage significant Crown investments and assets, gaining greater autonomy as a result, while the Corrections and Education ministries gained a 'C' rating. More>>

ALSO:

Govt Goal: NZ To Be "Predator Free" By 2050

Prime Minister John Key has today announced the Government has adopted the goal of New Zealand becoming Predator Free by 2050... “That’s why we have adopted this goal. Our ambition is that by 2050 every single part of New Zealand will be completely free of rats, stoats and possums." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The IOC’s Treatment Of Russian Sport, And Lone Wolf Terrorism

A blanket ban on Russian athletes would also have exposed the IOC to criticism that its treatment of Russia would have been marked contrast to its treatment say, of the track and field team from Kenya – a country about which the IOC has very similar doping concerns. More>>

ALSO:

Sounds Like A Plan: Auckland Council Receives Unitary Plan Recommendations

A key milestone in New Zealand planning history was reached today when the Independent Hearings Panel delivered the reports containing its recommendations on the Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan. More>>

ALSO:

National Park Expansion: Forests And Coast Of Kahurangi Protected

Five parcels of high value land totalling more than 890 hectares have been formally gazetted as part of the National Park. More>>

ALSO:

PPP Go-Ahead: SkyPath Gets Unanimous Support

Auckland’s SkyPath project has been given the go-ahead to be delivered through a public private partnership, after a unanimous decision at today’s Finance and Performance Committee. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Reserve Bank, The UN Shortlist, And Trump

Can there really be there any link between the US presidential elections and yesterday’s RBNZ signals on interest rates and the NZ dollar? Well, maybe. And it would be this: the improving US economy is reportedly putting a tailwind behind the US dollar, and rendering the actions of our Reserve Bank virtually irrelevant. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On What John Key Should Be Asking Joe Biden

No doubt, US Vice-President Joe Biden will be updating Prime Minister John Key on the chances of a TPP vote taking place in the ‘ lame duck’ session of Congress that’s held between the November’s election and the inauguration of a new President in January. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news