Sadiq Khan has pledged to make London the first city to end new HIV transmissions by 2030 if he is reelected on May 6.
Last week the mayor said London was ‘within touching distance’ of the ‘incredible achievement’ having already met the United Nations’ target of 90 per cent of people living with HIV knowing their status, 90 per cent of people diagnosed with HIV taking treatment, and 90 per cent of people on treatment with suppressed viral loads – meaning they cannot transmit the virus.
He said: “I have always done everything in my power to support London’s amazing LGBTQ+ communities – and I promise that will continue if I’m re-elected on 6 May.
“Too many Londoners tragically lost their lives to the AIDS crisis of the 1980s and 90s and although we’ve come a long way in our fight against HIV since then, there is still so much more we can and must be doing.
“We are now within touching distance of the incredible achievement of making London the first global city to end new HIV transmissions by 2030.
“ A brighter future lies ahead for London after this year and I firmly believe we can reach this milestone this decade.”
According to the National Aids Trust, there are believed to be 105,200 people living with HIV in the UK. Around 94 per cent of them know of their diagnosis – but around one in sixteen do not know they have the virus.
London, and Southwark and Lambeth in particular, have historically had high rates of new infections and also a comparatively large number of people living with HIV.
However, new diagnoses in the borough have been in decline since 2011.
Late diagnoses are also falling, meaning people are both being diagnosed earlier and also are less likely to pass the virus on to others.