colour divider

HIV in Greater Manchester – Men who have sex with men

Published: 02 December 2015 Tags: LGBT, PrEP, HIV, diagnosis By John Walding

Figures from the Centre for Public Health at Liverpool John Moores University have revealed that there were 531 new cases of HIV reported in Greater Manchester in 2014, an increase of 13% on 2013. It is believed that many people don’t know their status, so these figures indicate that more people are getting tested but also more awareness and support is needed amongst gay,bisexual and other MSM across Greater Manchester.

Nearly 5,000 HIV positive people in Greater Manchester accessed treatment and care in the last year, an increase of 5%.

The number of new diagnoses in men who have sex with men (MSM) continues to rise with 57% of all new cases.

The past decade has also seen an increase in new diagnoses among younger MSM (15-24 years) This increase may be explained by an increase in HIV testing and ongoing high rates of transmission.

While there is a need for all men who have sex with men to continue to have easy access to condoms and lube when they need them ,there also needs to be other ways for men to help protect themselves and their partners against HIV transmission. Similarly it is crucial that men find it easy to take advantage of other additional ways in which they can get tested quickly and efficiently to know their HIV status, thus avoid further transmitting the virus on to other men and also ensuring early access to treatment if needed.

Why the increase in HIV?

The 1980s initially saw substantial reductions in risky behaviours amongst MSM in response to HIV/AIDS but by the end of the 1990s evidence suggested that high risk sexual behaviour was increasing among the MSM population.

Findings from the National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles found that MSM reported larger numbers of sexual partners and were significantly more likely to report measures of poor sexual and mental health including: treatment for depression, health conditions which had a perceived effect on their sexual activity, STI diagnoses and higher levels of recreational drug use.


Nationally,there are increasing concerns about the impact of recreational drug use on the transmission of HIV.There is growing evidence that sexualised drug use, or Chemsex, among MSM is significantly associated with higher sexual risk taking behaviours The recent Chemsex Study published by Sigma research found that a quarter of HIV positive MSM surveyed had chosen to engage in unprotected anal sex with men they believed to be sero - discordant (one in which one partner is infected by HIV and the other is not.)

Condoms & Testing

LGBT Foundation have been promoting free safer sex packs to gay, bi and other MSM for over 20 years to help bring down rates of new infections. Over half a million condoms are distributed every year across Greater Manchester. The charity also has a regular weekly community HIV testing service available to MSM.

In 2011 RUClear began providing home sampling for residents of Greater Manchester. Since then 5,201 HIV tests have been undertaken. In 2013, this service was developed further to target men who have sex with men (MSM) in conjunction with LGBT Foundation and Manchester Centre for Sexual Health.

LGBT Foundation are now working in partnership with BHA for Equality ,Salford City Council, Manchester City Council, our local Public Health England team, Greater Manchester Commissioners and Bridgewater Community Healthcare Trust to launch a community based Point of Care Testing service in the New Year.


As well as ongoing condom and testing schemes LGBT Foundation are working with partners to highlight the need for PrEP ( the use of anti-HIV medication that keeps HIV negative people from becoming infected) to be made available immediately to those at the highest risk of acquiring HIV in our communities. Information on how PrEP effectively prevents HIV can be found. Greater Manchester’s Mayor and Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd has called for PreP ,a drug which prevents HIV infections to be made available on the NHS.

Clinical trials in the UK have shown PrEP’s effectiveness, but it isn’t currently available on the NHS. You can show you’re support for earlier access to PrEP by signing the pledge here:

The report 'HIV & AIDS In Greater Manchester 2014' can be downloaded from the Centre for Public Health at Liverpool JMU here

Related news

Tackling Hate Crime: Heywood, Middleton & Rochdale


LGBT Hate Crime Greater Manchester
15 December 2015

Do we need support from a lesbian and bisexual women's community?


lesbian bisexual community LGBT
01 October 2015

Rosie wins Bolton LGBT Champion award!


community leader NHS LGBT
20 October 2015

Say hello to LGBT Foundation’s new Deputy Chief Executive!


LGBT community support
19 October 2015

Latest HIV figures: Increase in positive gay,bisexual & other MSM


PrEP HIV diagnosis LGBT
27 November 2015

HIV and sexual health charities unite in action against government cuts


Stop Cuts Campaign HIV
25 October 2016

PrEP needed today, not tomorrow


22 March 2016

NHS agrees to reconsider its decision on PrEP


Rob Cookson PrEP
20 April 2016

LGBT people could finally be acknowledged in the 2021 Census


census office for national statistics LGBT
25 May 2016

Homophobic attack inspires volunteer to help vulnerable victims


Hate Crime Greater Manchester LGBT
09 February 2017

LGBT Foundation Board gains five dynamic new Trustees


LGBT Board Smyth Harper Trustees
17 November 2017

LGBT Foundation to run daily HIV clinics as part of National HIV Testing Week campaign


National Testing Week PaSH LGBT Foundation HIV
16 November 2017

Spotlight On ... Village Spartans RUFC


Manchester LGBT Manchester Village Spartans Rugby
27 April 2018

Viewpoint: How the European LGBT Community Took Eurovision to its Heart


Eurovision LGBT
08 May 2018

Viewpoint: Your Mental Illness is Not Who You Are!


LGBT Mental Health
05 June 2018

Russia 2018 – Room in the Stands for LGBT Fans?


LGBT Russia 2018
19 June 2018

Spotlight on … Out in the City


LGBT Out in the City 50+
26 June 2018

LGBT Holiday Tips


LGBT Holiday Tips
10 July 2018

OUT loud-LGBT carers have your say


Manchester Carers Network Survey LGBT
23 July 2018

LGBT Foundation response to Mayor Andy Burnham’s Fast-Track Cities announcement


HIV Sexual Health Fast-Track Cities GMCA
28 August 2018

LGBT Foundation's response to NHS England's PrEP IMPACT Trial investment


NHS PrEP HIV Sexual Health
11 January 2019

LGBT Foundation's response to NHS England's PrEP Impact Trial Delay


NHS PrEP HIV Impact Trial NHS England
24 January 2019

​LGBT Foundation reaffirms efforts to make PrEP universally available following NHS England announcement on trial expansion


PrEP HIV sexual health
28 February 2019

The unequal impacts of Covid 19


LGBT BAME ageing Ambition for Ageing Equalities Board coronavirus covid-19 inequality disabled
04 May 2020

Housing, Inequality and Ageing


housing accessible LGBT BAME ageing Ambition for Ageing Equalities Board inequality disabled
22 June 2020

Manchester's LGBT Extra Care Scheme: People living with HIV, have your say!


HIV ageing
25 November 2020

Innovation²: call to help address LGBT+ health inequalities


LGBT NHS AHSN Health Inequalities
16 March 2021

Let’s hear it for condoms and lube!


HIV Sexual Health STIs Condoms Lube CLDS
05 August 2021