New CDC Numbers
May Show Dramatic Increases in HIV Infections

New CDC Numbers
            May Show Dramatic Increases in HIV Infections

The Washington
is reporting that the U.S. Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention is debating when to
release what the story called "alarming new
statistics" showing that up to 50% more Americans are
being infected with HIV annually than the
government previously reported.

AIDS activist
groups familiar with the CDC told the Blade that
middle-level officials at the agency have quietly told
professional and scientific colleagues that the number
of new infections was as high as 58,000 to 63,000 cases in
the most recent 12-month period.

“It seems
to be a poorly kept secret,” Michael Weinstein,
president of the Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare
Foundation, told the Blade. “Everybody who has
dealings with the CDC is talking about it.”

On its Web site
the CDC states that about 40,000 Americans become
infected with the disease each year. According to the site,
that statistic has remained “relatively
stable” for most of the past decade.

CDC officials
have told AIDS advocacy group leaders that the statistics
are being withheld while they undergo a stringent peer
review process by an unidentified scientific journal.
The journal is expected to publish the findings within
the next month.

Two unidentified
sources told the Blade that CDC officials have
said privately that the higher numbers reflect more
rigorous and accurate HIV reporting of existing cases, not
an increase in new cases. The law has required that
AIDS cases be reported since the beginning of the
epidemic, in the early 1980s, but mandatory reporting of
HIV cases began only recently. (The

Tags: Health, Health