The community of men who have sex with men (MSM)
New diagnoses for HIV amongst MSM, where the infection occurred in NZ, rose sharply from 2000 to 2005. Since 2005 new diagnoses have stabilised at around 70 new infections per year, though small fluctuations between years exist.
Stabilising the number of new diagnoses amongst MSM is an achievement because, as the number of people living with HIV has continued to rise, the risk of the virus being passed on to others has also increased. In most other countries HIV amongst MSM has continued to increase.
The heterosexual community
Since 2006, the HIV epidemic among heterosexuals in New Zealand has reduced significantly. This is largely because, prior to 2006, most HIV infections amongst heterosexuals were acquired overseas.
Since 2006 New Zealand’s immigration policy has limited the number of people living with HIV who can move to this country. There are currently between ten and 20 heterosexual HIV diagnoses each year where the infection occurred in NZ.