ASIAN gay and bisexual men are testing for HIV at record levels revealed in the first research of its kind in 14 years.

Findings from the 2015 – 2016 Gay Asian Men Community Survey (GAMCS) – conducted by Cultural and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) Gay Men’s’ group in partnership with UNSW’s Centre for Social Research in Health – provide a contemporary and important insight into the sexual health behaviour and racism experienced by Asian gay and homosexually active men in Sydney

Findings from the survey will be presented at an upcoming community forum by ACON, NSW’s LGBTI health organisation.

Some of the key results from the GAMCS include:

  • Seven per cent of respondents having ever tested for HIV
  • 86 per cent of respondents reported testing for HIV within the past 12 months, with 32.5 per cent testing three times or more
  • Within the past 12 months, 37.2 per cent experienced racism and 25.4 per cent experienced homophobia
  • 46 per cent of respondents always use condoms with casual anal sex, and 37.3 per cent reported condomless casual anal sex
  • Six per cent tested for STIs in the last 12 months with 21.5 per cent reporting a STI diagnosis.

In addition to the findings of the GAMCS, the Annual HIV Surveillance Report 2015 published by the Kirby Institute indicated that men born in South East Asia accounted for 15 per cent of all diagnosis among men who have sex with men, and 44 per cent of new diagnoses among men who have sex with men born overseas.

ACON CEO Nicolas Parkhill says this body of research underscores the vital importance of having current data to inform a contemporary, community-led and culturally relevant HIV response for Asian gay men.

“To discuss these important findings and developments as well as hear feedback from the community, ACON is hosting the Finding Our Voice forum,” said ACON’s Asian Gay Men Health Promotion officer Tim Chen.

“We have a panel of guest speakers from diverse backgrounds and fields, representing a wide range of expert voices on sexual health and community.

“We’ll openly talk about sex, condoms, PrEP, drug use and stigma with the forum emceed by the chair of South Asian LGBT support group Trikone Australasia, Kunal Mirchandani.”

When: Wednesday December 14, 6pm

Where: Level 2, Colombian Hotel, 117-125 Oxford St, Darlinghurst
RSVP: Before December 11  at  asia@acon.org.au  or  02 9206 2080

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