Amsterdam’s Sluts Aren’t Being Safe

How to explain why the HIV rates among gay and bisexual men in Amsterdam aren’t declining, and may actually be on the rise? Because fewer MSM are using protection while doing the deed, researchers conclude in a report published in the journal AIDS. Looking at 1,642 MSM in Amsterdam over 25 years, “researchers found that from 1984 to 1988, the percentage of men who said they’d had unprotected anal sex in the past six months dropped from 78 percent to 33 percent. The rate then crept upward, reaching 38 percent in 1995, before jumping to 55 percent by 2009. When it came to yearly rates of new HIV infections, there was a sharp drop early on — from 8.6 percent of men in 1985, to 1.3 percent in 1992. But since 1996, there has been a small increase — from 1.4 percent to 2 percent in 2009. And while it’s unclear if the new, upward trend is real or just a matter of chance, the researchers say it’s concerning considering the increases in risky sex.” Fingerpointing lands first on the success of HIV drugs making the virus less of a death sentence and more a manageable health condition.