More people living with HIV have the virus under control, according to the most recent national data. In 2014, CDC researchers say, of the estimated 1.1 million people with HIV in the U.S., 85% were diagnosed and 49% were controlling the virus through HIV treatment. By comparison, in 2010, 83% were diagnosed but only 28% were controlling the virus. The data were released recently in the CDC’s report, Monitoring Selected National HIV Prevention and Care Objectives by Using HIV Surveillance Data.
The CDC says making testing and treatment more available in addition to updated treatment guidelines released in 2012 that recommended treatment for all people with HIV infection, were “likely major contributors” to driving down annual infections by 18% between 2008-2014.
In 2014, 37,600 new infections were diagnosed. Of HIV infections diagnosed during 2015, 22% were classified as stage 3 (AIDS), although the percentages had declined from 2010. Nine out of 10 HIV infections are transmitted by people who are not diagnosed or are not in care. Young people are at highest risk. According to the CDC researchers’ estimates, only 56% of people aged 13-24 years with HIV were diagnosed and only 27% had the virus under control.
However, patients are getting appropriate care sooner and more often. Of 28,238 people who were diagnosed during 2015, 75% were linked to HIV medical care within 1 month of diagnosis, and 84% within 3 months.
“The Monitoring Report signals that we are making progress on most of our national HIV prevention, care and treatment goals,” said Richard Wolitski, PhD, director, Office of HIV/AIDS and Infectious Disease Policy in his blog on HIV.gov. “It also shows us where we need to do better and reassess our efforts, diagnose the problems and use this information to make the changes to our policies, programs, and services that are needed to turn the results around.”