Blood sample results are an effective way to demonstrate the extent of HIV in the community with biological evidence. ManCount results showed that 18.1% of the men in the sample were HIV positive–suggesting almost 1 in 5 in Vancouver’s gay venue population were HIV positive at the time of the survey.
Considering only men from the GreaterVancouver Region, ManCount found that 20.8% were HIV positive by blood sample. This evidence indicates that HIV prevalence is very high among Vancouver’s gay men–so high that the level of infection in the community alone would be a major influence in any gay man’s likelihood of getting infected.
HIV Prevalence by Age Group
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Answers to specific questions in the survey broadened this finding to show the proportion “aware” and “unaware” of their status. About 14% of blood-sample positive men thought they were HIV negative. In other words, 2.5% or 1 in 40 of all ManCount men were unaware of being HIV positive.
ManCount results showed that HIV prevalence increased with age which means there were increasingly more positive men in older age groups. Greater opportunity for HIV transmission appears to occur with the passage of time over the lifespan.
While lower prevalence among younger men may seem cause for optimism, at the current rate of new infections, young men under 30 now may see the same HIV prevalence among their peers when they reach 45 as seen in older gay men today–unless conditions change.