New amfAR Report Calls for HIV Services for Asian MSM
August 17, 2009—“Staggeringly few” men who have sex with men (MSM) in Asia and the Pacific are being reached by HIV prevention efforts and other HIV services, according to a recently released amfAR report. Across the region, stigma, discrimination, and a lack of data on HIV among MSM have hindered HIV treatment, care, support, and prevention efforts and contributed to the alarming rates of infection within this population. Citing data showing that only two percent of MSM are receiving prevention services in 11 South and Southeast Asian nations, the report argues that greater efforts must be made to understand the scope of the epidemic among MSM and to expand access to the lifesaving services they urgently need.
amfAR’s report, Ensuring Universal Access to Comprehensive HIV Services for MSM in Asia and the Pacific, outlines the key steps necessary to confront this public health crisis—beginning with research on what services MSM need and what kinds of intervention models work best within this diverse population. Such research is necessary to help answer key questions about how to engage a wide range of MSM—including transgendered people and men who do not identify as gay—and generate evidence that will help Asian governments implement comprehensive and effective MSM-specific services as part of their national AIDS strategies.
amfAR CEO Kevin Robert Frost presented the report at a pre-conference meeting on MSM and HIV held in conjunction with the International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific (ICAAP), which took place August 9–13 in Bali, Indonesia.
To download a copy of the report, click here.