Each year, AFAO provides a snapshot of what HIV looks like in Australia. This resource, HIV in Australia, provides the most up to date epidemiological data in the form of a straightforward infographic.
Total HIV diagnoses
- The number of HIV notifications newly diagnosed in Australia has fallen to the lowest number of diagnoses since 2010, with 963 notifications in 2017.
- There has been a 7% decrease in the number of HIV diagnoses in Australia in the last five years due to a decrease
in diagnoses among men reporting male‑to‑male sex.
- The main route of HIV transmission in Australia continues to be sexual contact between men, which accounted for 63% of notifications in 2017, a further 25% of cases were attributed to heterosexual sex, 5% to sexual contact between men and injecting drug use, 3% to injecting drug use only, and 4% to other/unspecified.
- Among notifications attributed to heterosexual sex, 17% were in people born in countries recognised by UNAIDS as having a national prevalence above 1% (high prevalence), and 13.4% in people with sexual partners born in high prevalence countries.
- Based on tests for immune function, over a third (36%) of the new HIV notifications in 2017 were late. This means that they were in people likely to have been living with HIV for at least four years without being tested.
- Late diagnoses in men reporting sex with both men and women remain high, at 49% in 2017.
- HIV diagnoses attributed to male‑to‑male sex in the last five years (2013–2017), late diagnosis was more common among men reporting sex with both men and women (42%), men reporting injecting drug use as well as sex with both men and women (41%), older men (over 50 years) (38%), men born in East Asia (37%), and men living in regional areas (30%).
- Among men born overseas with male-to-male sex as their risk exposure, the proportion who were born in Asia has increased over the past 10 years from 28% in 2008 to 52% in 2017.
- Over the last five years the proportion with late diagnoses was highest in people born in Sub‑Saharan Africa (53%), Southeast Asia (48%) and Central America (43%).
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander diagnoses
- Based on 31 cases, the age standardised rate of HIV notification in 2017 among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples was 1.6 times the rate in the Australian‑born non‑Indigenous population (4.6 versus 2.8 per 100 000).
- In the most recent five year reporting period (2013 – 2017), a greater proportion of HIV notifications in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population were attributed to heterosexual sex (21%) or injecting drug use (18%), compared with the Australian‑born non‑Indigenous population (18% and 3% respectively).
- Among 233 children born to HIV-positive mothers in Australia in the five year period 2013 – 2017, the transmission rate to newborns was 1%, compared to 23% in the period 1993 – 1997.