Mobile Version - March - April 2017

From the Director Dr. Jonathan Mermin

At the 2017 Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI), researchers from CDC presented new estimates of annual HIV infections, or HIV incidence, in the United States. Overall, annual HIV infections declined 18 percent from 45,700 HIV infections in 2008 to 37,600 HIV infections in 2014 - a sign that high-impact HIV prevention is working. Incidence fell sharply among heterosexuals (36%), people who inject drugs (56%), and 13-24 year old (26%) and 35-44 year old (18%) men who have sex with men (MSM). Annual HIV infections declined substantially and statistically in Washington, D.C. (10%), Maryland (8%), Pennsylvania (7%), Georgia (6%), New York (approx. 5%), North Carolina (approx. 5%), Illinois (4%), and Texas (2%). Yet the data also show that tough challenges remain, particularly for communities in the South and among some age groups of MSM. While Southern states represented 37 percent of the U.S. population in 2014, they accounted for 50 percent of new HIV infections. Increases in incidence occurred among MSM aged 25-34 (35%) and Hispanic/Latino MSM (20%). These data continue to inform our work on the national, state, and local levels and help identify the drivers of new HIV infections.

PrEP and STI Testing

Another study released at CROI looked at pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and sexually transmitted infection (STI) testing. A collaboration between Emory University's Rollins School of Public Health and CDC, the findings indicate that PrEP, along with testing for and treatment of STIs, can reduce not only HIV acquisition, but also the acquisition of STIs - even in the presence of some reductions in condom usage. The study demonstrated that more than 40 percent of chlamydia and 42 percent of gonorrhea infections could be prevented over the next decade if 40 percent of PrEP-eligible gay and bisexual men took PrEP and underwent bacterial STI testing and treatment every six months, per CDC's recommendations. These reductions in STIs would occur even with a 40 percent reduction in condom use while on PrEP.

AtlasPlus Launch

CDC's surveillance systems track HIV, AIDS, viral hepatitis, STDs, and TB. Getting this information to those who need it most in an accessible, usable, and meaningful format is a primary goal for CDC. Last month we launched AtlasPlus, an updated online resource that allows you to create customized tables, maps, and other graphics from the most current surveillance data available. The most recent addition is an updated slide set related to CDC's mission to reduce health disparities among populations most disproportionately affected by HIV, STDs, TB, and viral hepatitis. These slides include 2015 poverty rates, median household income, educational attainment, vacant housing, and rate of primary care physicians at the state and county levels.