HIV IN THE UK STATISTICS - 2017

STAY INFORMED WITH THE LATEST FACTS AND FIGURES ON HIV IN THE UK

Living with HIV

HEADLINES

  • A total of 93,385 people, including 356 children aged under 15, received HIV care in 2017.
  • The number of people accessing specialist care for HIV has steadily grown over the last decade. From 2008 to 2017, the number of people accessing HIV care has increased by 54%.

Gender

  • Just over two thirds of people receiving HIV specialist care in
    2017 were men and one third were women 


ETHNICITY

  • Over half of people receiving HIV specialist care in the UK
    were white, and almost a third were black African.

AGE

  • The number of people with an HIV diagnosis who are aged 55 and over has seen an increase over recent years.
  • Two in five people accessing HIV care are now aged 50 or over.

UK Distribution

  • The vast majority of people receiving HIV care in the UK in
    2017 did so in England.
  • Within England, 43% of people who receive HIV care access
    it in London. 

MODE OF TRANSMISSION

  • Over 90% of people accessing HIV care have acquired HIV through sexual transmission.
  • The proportion of people accessing HIV care who acquired HIV through heterosexual sex is roughly the same as the proportion of people who acquired HIV through sex between men,
  • Of those receiving HIV care in 2017, 43,494 (47%) were exposed to HIV through sex between men, 43,141 (46%) were exposed through sex between a man and a woman, 1,900 (2%) were exposed through injecting drug use, and 1,664 (less than 2%) were exposed before or shortly after birth (termed 'vertical transmission). In the 'Other' category, 984 (1%) were exposed to HIV through blood/receiving blood products - these people were exposed to HIV outside of the UK as blood products are not a transmission route in the UK (due to strict screening procedures). There are also 2,202 people in the 'Other' category where the exposure route could not be determined.

Newly diagnosed

HEADLINES

  • 4,363 people were newly diagnosed wtih HIV in the UK in 2017.
  • New HIV diagnoses have continued to decline over the past decade with a substantial decrease over the past two years;
    the 2017 figure represents a 17% drop from the 5,280 diagnoses reported in 2016 and a 28% drop from the 6,043 diagnoses in 2015.
  • This recent reduction has been mostly driven by fewer HIV diagnoses among gay and bisexual men, which have decreased by almost a third (31%) since 2015 to 2,330 diagnoses in 2017.
  • The number of gay and bisexual men newly diagnosed
    with HIV in London dropped by 44%, from 1,415 in 2015 to 798 in 2017, and by 28% outside of London, from 1,618 to 1,167. Previously, diagnoses among gay and bisexual men had been increasing year on year.

MODE OF TRANSMISSION

  • 78% of new diagnoses in 2017 were due to sexual transmission. The largest proportion of new diagnoses in 2017 were due to sex between men, followed by heterosexual sex. 

GENDER

  • Out of the 4,363 people newly diagnosed with HIV in 2017,
    3,236 (74%) were men and 1,125 (26%) were women.

ETHNICITY

  • More than half of people diagnosed with HIV in 2017 were white and 16% were black African. 2% of new diagnoses in the UK were among black Caribbean people, despite this group making up only 1% of the UK population. 

AGE

  • 68% of people newly diagnosed with HIV in 2017 were aged between 25 and 49.
  • There are a growing number of people being diagnosed with HIV later in life, with around one in five people newly diagnosed aged 50 or over in 2017.

    UK DISTRIBUTION

    • The majority of newly diagnosed cases of HIV in the UK occur in England (91%).

     Most of these diagnoses are in London (36%).
     

    Late diagnosis


    HEADLINES

    • Someone is considered to have been diagnosed late if they have a CD4 count below 350 cells/mm³ within three months of diagnosis. 
    • 43% of people newly diagnosed in 2017 were diagnosed at a late stage of HIV infection.
    • Late diagnosis increases the risk of premature mortality among people with HIV.

    MODE OF TRANSMISSION

    • In 2017, the proportion of late diagnoses was highest among heterosexual men (59%), followed by heterosexual women (50%) and people who inject drugs (47%). It was lowest among men who have sex with men (33%).

    AGE AT DIAGNOSIS

    • Older people are more likely to be diagnosed late. In 2017, 31% of people aged 15-24 were diagnosed late, compared to 55% of those aged 50-64 and 61% of those aged 65 and older. 

    ETHNICITY

    • People from Black and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities are more likely to be diagnosed late.
    • The proportion of late diagnoses was particularly high among people of Black other ethnicity (60%), followed by Black African (58%),
      Black Caribbean (52%) and Asian (46%).

    UK Distribution

    • Geographically, the highest rates of late diagnosis in 2017 were in Wales (53%), followed by England (43%) and Northern Ireland (42%) and Scotland (41%).

    MEN WHO HAVE SEX WITH MEN (MSM)

    HIV statistics talk about 'men who have sex' with men to include all gay, bisexual and other men who
    have sex with men.

    HEADLINES

    • In 2017, 2,330 of MSM were newly diagnosed. This is a 31% decrease since 2015 and reflects the success of increased HIV testing
      and increased uptake of HIV treatment. The introduction of PrEP is also likely to have had an impact, but it is too early to measure this.
    • Of the 2,330 MSM newly diagnosed, 33% were diagnosed late. 
    • 43,494 MSM received care in 2017.

    ETHNICITY

    • The majority of MSM who were newly diagnosed in 2017 are white (72%).
    • This proportion is even greater for the total number of MSM accessing HIV care in 2017 - 84.4% are white.
    • Black African MSM are the second largest group of newly diagnosed MSM, whilst Asian MSM are the second largest group of MSM accessing HIV care.

    AGE

    • The majority of MSM newly diagnosed (71%) and accessing HIV care (58.5%) are aged between 25 and 49.
    • Young MSM aged 15-24 are the second largest group in new diagnoses, while MSM aged 50 and over are the second largest group in MSM accessing HIV care.

    UK DISTRIBUTION (newly diagnosed)

    UK DISTRIBUTION (accessing HIV care)

    Black african people

    • Black African people make up 29.1% of all people accessing HIV care in 2017.
    • Black African women are disproportionately affected by HIV, with 65.2% accessing HIV care.
    • Black African people accessing HIV care tend to be older, with the majority (84.9%) aged between 35 and 64.
    • The vast majority of Black African people living with HIV acquired it through heterosexual sex.
    • Nearly all of the Black African people receiving HIV care in 2017 are accessing it in England.

      Black Caribbean people

      • Black Caribbean people make up 3.0% of all people accessing HIV care in 2017.
      • Black Caribbean men are disproportionately affected by HIV, with 58.9% accessing HIV care.
      • Black Caribbean people accessing HIV care tend to be older, with the majority (77.3%) aged between 35 and 64.
      • The majority (64.0%) of Black Caribbean people living with HIV acquired it through heterosexual sex, although the second largest group (31.7%) acquired HIV through sex between men. 
      • Nearly all of the Black Caribbean people receiving HIV care in 2017 are accessing it in England.

      UK statistics have been sourced from Public Health England. You can read PHE's annual report on HIV in the UK and access the data on the PHE website.