The number of new HIV cases reported in Germany increased by 4% in 2007, according to data recently released by the Robert Koch Institute, Xinhua/People's Daily reports. The country recorded 2,752 new HIV cases last year, compared with 2,643 in 2006, the institute said (Xinhua/People's Daily, 5/6).
There was a 12% increase in the number of new HIV cases reported among men who have sex with men, according to the institute. The researchers said that cases among MSM account for about 65% of all HIV cases in Germany, Deutsche Welle reports. New confirmed HIV cases declined among injection drug users and immigrants from countries with high HIV/AIDS burdens, the institute said (Deutsche Welle, 5/7).
However, new cases increased by 7.5% overall among heterosexuals, the data showed. Cases increased by 8% among men and declined by 12% among women. The institute said that urban areas -- including Berlin, Cologne, Duesseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg and Munich -- had the highest HIV risk (Xinhua/People's Daily, 5/6).
HIV/AIDS rates in Germany have increased steadily since 2001, which could be in part because of an increase in testing and early diagnosis, Deutsche Welle reports. RKI President Joerg Hacker noted that one of the "little-known reasons" for the increase in new HIV cases is the high number of syphilis cases in Germany. Germany has seen an increase in syphilis cases annually since 2004, Deutsche Welle reports. There are about 59,000 HIV-positive people living in the country (Deutsche Welle, 5/7).