Twenty-four-year-old Derrick Burts has revealed himself as "patient Zeta" -- the porn actor who tested positive for HIV and set of a scare earlier this year in California's adult entertainment industry. Burts, who was only active in porn for a few months, occupied an interesting place in the industry by regularly shooting both straight and gay scenes in California and Florida. He claims that he became infected with the virus during a gay shoot in Florida, but is now calling on the straight porn industry to adopt mandatory condom usage.
Burts came forward to clear up misconceptions he believed the industry spread about his case. He had tested positive at an Adult Industry Medical Healthcare Foundation clinic in October. The positive test result set of a scare in the industry, and many straight porn studios temporarily halted production. None of Burts' straight scene partners have since tested positive.
At the time AIM said, with out naming him publicly, that the model acquired the virus in his personal life. However, Burts says he only had sex outside of porn with his girlfriend (who is also a porn performer and tested negative).
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Burts tells The LA Times that he was privately told he was infected during a gay porn shoot in Florida. He doesn't elaborate on which studios he worked for, but much of Florida's porn industry is concentrated in Broward and Miami-Dade.
Gay and straight porn studios have vastly different policies when it comes to protecting their models from STDs. Straight porn requires monthly testing, but rarely if ever requires performers to wear condoms on set. Most mainstream gay companies require models to wear condoms, and while regular testing takes place, not every studio demands monthly tests.
Burts is also now calling for straight companies to adopt regular condom usage, even though he was infected at a gay porn shoot (there are some gay porn companies that peddle in "bareback" or condom-less shoots, but it doesn't appear that Burts was working with one). He does however say he may have contracted herpes, gonorrhea and chlamydiae on straight shoots.
AIM implored Burts not to seek treatment at the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (which has clinics in both California and Florida), but Burts was so impressed by the treatment he received he decided to come out against AIM. AIM believes in testing, while AHF campaigns for all porn companies to require models to wear condoms.