Women risk HIV from unprotected anal sex

April 22, 2010 at 12:37 AM   |   Comments

NEW YORK, April 22 (UPI) -- Women in New York are less likely than men to use condoms when having anal sex, putting them at risk of HIV infection, city health officials said.

"Tens of thousands of New Yorkers are engaging in sexual behavior that is especially risky," Dr. Thomas Farley, New York City health commissioner, said in a statement. "Many people are aware of the risk of human immunodeficiency virus when men have sex with other men, but this report shows that a large number of women also are putting themselves at high risk through unprotected anal sex. For both men and women, the overall message is clear: Never engage in unprotected anal sex. Use a condom every time."

The city health department report said 23 percent of women reported using a condom during anal sex, while 61 percent of men who have sex with men say they use a condom.

In addition, 35 percent of women who have unprotected anal sex are tested for HIV, while 63 percent of women who always use condoms during anal sex are tested for HIV, the report said.

The report is at nyc.gov/health.

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