State reports increase in new HIV infectionsby Lorna Benson, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Health officials report another slight increase in the number of new HIV infections in the state.
The Minnesota Department of Health says there were 325 new cases in 2007, compared to 318 in 2006. There was also a small increase in HIV cases the prior year.
HIV/AIDS Surveillance Epidemiologist Louisa Pessoa-Brandao says the trend could be related to more relaxed attitudes about HIV and AIDS.
"I think people just don't see it as the same kind of threat that it was. And so I think there might be some complacency and the message around you need to protect yourself and you need to be safe just doesn't have the same ring to it when you're not so much worried about dying," said Pesso-Brandao.
Infection rates are higher among communities of color when compared to whites. And the number of new HIV cases among males ages 13 to 24 has doubled over the last 6 years. Pessoa-Brandao says that suggests that some populations may not be getting the right prevention messages.