The Florida Department of Health offers numerous specialized initiatives to benefit the health of Florida’s communities. We invite you to learn more about our comprehensive HIV prevention strategies — and to join our growing network of grassroots HIV educators.

HIV Initiatives

Additional Initiatives

Men Who Have Sex With Men

MSMSocial and economic factors, including racism, homophobia, poverty, and lack of access to health care, are barriers to receiving HIV prevention services, particularly for MSM of minority races or ethnicities. African American and Hispanic men are more likely than white men to be given a diagnosis of HIV infection in the late stages of infection, often when they already have AIDS, suggesting that they are not accessing testing or health care services through which HIV infection could be diagnosed at an earlier stage.

Sexual Risk Factors
Sexual risk factors account for most HIV infections in MSM. Not using a condom during anal sex continues to be a significant threat to the health of MSM.

Substance Use
The use of alcohol and illegal drugs continues to be prevalent among some MSM and is linked to risk factors for HIV infection and other STDs. Substance use can increase the risk for HIV transmission through the tendency toward risky sexual behaviors while under the influence and through sharing needles or other injection equipment

MSM Who Are HIV-positive
Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAART) has enabled HIV-infected MSM to live longer. However, HAART’s success means there are more MSM living with HIV who can potentially transmit the virus to their sex partners. This emphasizes the importance of focusing prevention efforts on those who are living with HIV.

Although many MSM reduce risk behaviors after learning that they have HIV, most remain sexually active. Most HIV-infected MSM believe that they have a personal responsibility to protect others from HIV, but some engage in risky sexual behaviors that may result in others’ contracting HIV

The Internet
During the past decade, the Internet has created new opportunities for MSM to meet sex partners. Internet users can anonymously find partners with similar sexual interests without having to leave their residence or having to risk face-to-face rejection if the behaviors they seek are not consistent with safer sex. The Internet may also normalize certain risky behaviors by making others aware of these behaviors and creating new connections between those who engage in them. At the same time, however, the Internet is a potentially powerful tool for use with HIV prevention interventions.

Social Discrimination and Cultural Issues
MSM are members of all communities, all races and ethnicities, and all strata of society. To reduce the rate of HIV infection, prevention efforts must be designed with respect for the many differences among MSM and with recognition of the discrimination against MSM and persons infected with HIV in many parts of the country.

Social and economic factors, including racism, homophobia, poverty, and lack of access to health care, are barriers to receiving HIV prevention services, particularly for MSM of minority races or ethnicities. African American and Hispanic men are more likely than white men to be given a diagnosis of HIV infection in the late stages of infection, often when they already have AIDS, suggesting that they are not accessing testing or health care services through which HIV infection could be diagnosed at an earlier stage.

9 1/2 Minutes

Every 9 1/2 minutes (on average), someone in the United States is infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. Before we can stop any epidemic, we first have to recognize the magnitude of the disease. HIV is still a threat across the United States.
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Greater Than AIDS

Lead by the Kaiser Family Foundation, Greater Than AIDS is a national program that addresses HIV and AIDS disparities among the nation’s minority communities. Florida participates in the Greater Than AIDS campaign via outdoor billboard advertising in Florida’s most affected counties.
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HIV/AIDS Observances
MSM Info
FL HIV/AIDS Hotline 1-800-FLA-AIDS
FL Testing Centers - Text Zip code to 477493
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