Risky sex, drug acts decline in US: survey

High-risk sexual behaviors and drug habits that can increase a person's likelihood of getting HIV/AIDS are on the decline in the United States, according to a government survey released Thursday.

The number of Americans who said they had more than five sex partners in the past year, failed to use a condom, had sex in exchange for drugs or money, used illicit drugs, had male-to-male sex or had an HIV positive partner all dropped slightly from 2006-2010 compared to 2002.

About 10 percent of and eight percent of women in the current period reported at least one of these HIV-risk behaviors, down from 13 percent of men and 11 percent of women in 2002.

That means about 6.5 million men and 4.9 million women reported HIV-risk related behaviors in the year prior to taking the latest survey.

The report, issued by the National Center for Health Statistics, drew from a survey of 22,682 people aged 15-44, most of whom answered questions by entering responses into a computer rather than to a live interviewer.

This method "has been found to yield more complete reporting of sensitive behaviors," said the report.

Nationwide, new cases of HIV have leveled off at about 50,000 in the United States each year, with 16,000 people dying annually of AIDS, the Centers for Disease Control said.

About 1.2 million people in the are living with HIV, and about 20 percent do not know they are HIV positive.

Thursday's report said that 61 percent of new AIDS infections in 2009 were among men who have with men, while 27 percent were attributed to heterosexual contact and nine percent to injection of .

Men who had prison experience in the past year were most likely to report at least one risky behavior -- 27 percent -- compared to seven percent of men who had not done time behind bars.

Men with military experience were also less likely (6.8 percent) than men without (10 percent) to report risky behavior.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Report says 3 percent in DC have HIV or AIDS

Mar 16, 2009

(AP) -- A new report by D.C. health officials says that at least 3 percent of residents in the nation's capital are living with HIV or AIDS and every mode of transmission is on the rise.

Many Americans with HIV go untreated: study

Nov 29, 2011

Nearly three quarters of the 1.2 million Americans with HIV do not have their infection under control, raising the risk of death from AIDS and transmission to others, said a US study on Tuesday.

Recommended for you

Lack of sleep increases risk of failure in school

8 minutes ago

A new Swedish study shows that adolescents who suffer from sleep disturbance or habitual short sleep duration are less likely to succeed academically compared to those who enjoy a good night's sleep. The ...

Life, liberty, and the pursuit of healthcare?

9 minutes ago

"Obamacare"—was signed into law in 2010 and promised the largest overhaul of the U.S. healthcare system since the 1960s. Designed to provide medical care to uninsured Americans, it has been widely decried ...

Health woes to worsen due to climate change, study warns

1 hour ago

(HealthDay)—Coupled with worldwide marches demanding action on climate change, a new study warns that rising temperatures and altered weather patterns in the United States may soon exacerbate many existing ...

User comments