The National HIV/AIDS Strategy Progress Report: The Good and the Not-So-Good News
This past May, the National HIV/AIDS Strategy (NHAS) Federal Interagency Workgroup released the 2017 National HIV/AIDS Strategy (NHAS) Progress Report. The general consensus: The fight against HIV is going well...but there’s still more that needs to be done.
With more people than ever taking medication that can prevent the transmission of HIV, information about HIV prevention widely accessible, and rapid HIV tests available to many, we’re making positive strides in the fight against HIV.
The study showed that last year the United States met or exceeded annual targets in nine categories and came very close to meeting two other targets. Most significantly, the report showed that:
- The number of new HIV diagnoses decreased by nearly 5% from 41,985 in 2011 to 39,876 in 2015.
- The percentage of people living with diagnosed HIV who were virally suppressed increased from 46.0% in 2010 to 57.9% in 2014.
- The number of adults prescribed PrEP increased by more than 300% from 7,972 in 2014 to 33,273 in 2015.
There’s no denying that the above numbers are something to celebrate. But unfortunately, progress is still not being enjoyed by everyone. The study showed that lower-income areas, regions down South, and people of certain ethnicities have been reporting the same or similar numbers of HIV diagnoses for years.
The Really Not-So-Good
Gay and bisexual men were once again the group with the highest number of HIV diagnoses in 2017. Since this study was created in 2010, gay and bisexual men continue to be the population that is most at risk for contracting HIV.
Although many statistics from this report are encouraging, it’s clear that there is still a lot of work to be done, specifically in lower income areas and in the LGBT community. Keep an eye out for the next NHAS progress report, which is expected to come out in 2020.