NEW HIV CASES CONTINUE TO HAVE LATE-STAGE INFECTION – MOH AND HPB URGE AT-RISK GROUPS TO GO FOR VOLUNTARY TESTING
1. In the first 10 months of 2011 (January – October), another 370 new HIV cases were reported among Singapore residents . By extrapolation, the total number of notified HIV cases in 2011 is expected to be similar to that of 2010 (441 cases).
2. There were 200 new HIV cases reported in the first 6 months of 2011 (See Annex A). Information on new HIV cases is regularly updated on the MOH website.
3. Between July and October 2011, another 170 new HIV cases were reported. The additional new cases are currently undergoing further investigations, and more information on them will be released at a later date.
Characteristics of new cases of HIV infection reported in first 6 months of 2011
4. Of the 200 Singapore residents detected to be HIV-infected in the first six months of 2011, 58% of them already had late-stage HIV infection  when they were diagnosed. This was similar to the pattern in previous years.
5. 94.5 % of the new cases reported in the first six months of 2011 were males and 5.5% were females. About half (48%) of them were aged between 30 to 49 years of age. In terms of marital status, approximately 65% were single, 25% were married and 9% were divorced or separated.
6. Sexual transmission remains the main mode of HIV transmission. Of the 200 cases reported in the first 6 months of 2011, 195 cases acquired the infection through the sexual route, with heterosexual transmission accounting for 45% of infections, homosexual transmission 44% and bisexual transmission 9%. Investigations are ongoing to determine the mode of transmission for five cases (2%).
7. More than half of the new cases in the first 6 months of 2011 ( 60%) had their HIV detected when they had HIV testing in the course of some form of medical care, while another 14% were detected as a result of some form of health screening. 14% were detected as a result of voluntary HIV screening. The rest were detected through contact tracing and other screening. When differentiated by sexual orientation, a higher proportion of homosexuals had their HIV infection detected via voluntary screening compared to heterosexuals (27% vs. 2%).
Regular HIV testing
8. MOH and HPB continue to urge those at risk of HIV infection and those who engage in risky sexual behavior to go for regular HIV testing. Regular HIV testing can help an infected person to be diagnosed at an earlier stage of infection. Early diagnosis allows earlier access to care and management , as well as counseling on how to protect their partners from infection.
9. To complement MOH’s efforts in urging regular HIV testing for at-risk individuals, HPB conducts various educational outreach programmes on HIV prevention and management. Using a ‘3P’ approach to leverage People in the community, Private companies and other agencies in the Public sector, these programmes debunk myths and misconceptions about HIV as well as reduce the stigma and discrimination against People Living with HIV (PLHIVs)
10. These programmes also encourage at-risk individuals to take personal protective measures and have regular HIV testing, so as to allow for early detection and management, delay the onset of AIDS and ensure an active and productive life.
 Singapore citizens and permanent residents
 CD4+ cell count of less than 200 per cu mm or AIDS-defining opportunistic infections or both.