Thank you for contacting me about action to tackle HIV/AIDS/World AIDS Day.
I know that good progress has been made in terms of falling numbers of HIV diagnoses across England, however, more remains to be done including preventing late diagnosis. That is why I support the Government’s commitment to become the first nation in the World to reach zero HIV transmissions by 2030.
On World AIDS Day 2021, the Government published its HIV Action Plan which included an interim commitment to an 80 per cent reduction in transmission by 2025. This builds on the nation’s success in diagnosing over 90 per cent of people who live with HIV and ensuring that over 90 per cent of those who are diagnosed are getting treatment.
To deliver the plan, the Government is providing £20 million to scale up HIV testing among higher risk people, including £3.5 million to deliver a National HIV Prevention Programme between 2021 and 2024.
Opt-out testing will be expanded in emergency departments in 21 local authority areas during 2022/23. This builds on the great success of opt-out testing in pilot sites in London, Manchester, Blackpool and Brighton, with 128 people newly diagnosed with HIV after 100 days.
I welcome the Government’s continued work with charities such as the Terence Higgins Trust and the World AIDS Day initiative, to raise awareness of HIV and reach groups with the highest rates of the infection.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.