NEWLY acquired HIV transmissions in Victoria have dropped by 50 per cent this year, a new report shows.

The report from the Burnet Institute for the state government shows 26 newly acquired cases of HIV were reported in the state between January and April, down from 52 in the same period last year.

The majority of new cases were among men, with gay sex the most common mode of transmission identified.

Most new cases of HIV were in people living in metropolitan Victoria, with a few cases reported in regional areas.

Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), a daily pill that prevents HIV in people who are negative, may be a factor in the reduction in HIV transmission.

People in Victoria have been able to access PrEP through an Alfred Health research study. The study is currently full but Victorians can go on a waiting list to enrol.

PrEP is also available in other states through similar studies.

About 10 per cent of people living with HIV in Australia don’t know they are positive.

Testing for HIV is available through GPs, sexual health clinics and rapid testing centres.

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