Home / Health / Articles / How many people in the US receive care for HIV?

More than 797,000 people in the US received care for HIV in 2021, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Nearly 1.1 million people nationwide have been diagnosed with HIV, including 35,769 new diagnoses in 2021. Rapid identification and treatment help stem the spread of HIV and can improve the health outcomes of people who contract the sexually transmitted disease. Early diagnosis and treatment are also central components of the federal government’s plan to end the HIV epidemic.

How many newly diagnosed HIV patients receive medical care within a month of diagnosis?

In 2022, 82.2% of people who were newly diagnosed with HIV received care within one month of their diagnosis, according to preliminary government estimates. That’s an increase from 77.8% in 2017. The federal government’s goal is 95% by 2025.

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How have HIV-related deaths changed over time?

From 2010 to 2018, ​​death rates among people with HIV decreased by about 37%. In 2021, 4,977 people died of HIV/AIDS in the US, a mortality rate of 1.5 people per 100,000.

Are there ways to counter the spread of HIV pre-infection?

The FDA approved pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), an HIV-preventative medication, in 2012. By 2021, 30% of the 1.2 million people who could benefit from PrEP received prescriptions for it, according to CDC estimates. That’s up from 13% in 2017. PrEP is a pre-infection treatment that the CDC reports reduces the risk of getting HIV from sex by about 99% — regardless of sexual orientation — and reduces the risk of getting HIV from drug injection by at least 74%, when taken as prescribed.

HIV death rates over time

The nation’s HIV death rate rose sharply from the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s, reaching its peak of 16.2 deaths per 100,000 people in 1995. It then dropped in the late 90s — attributed by the CDC to greater awareness and improved treatments — and has steadily declined since 2000.

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What factors contribute to changes in HIV-related deaths?

Improvements in care for HIV patients have contributed to the recent decline in HIV-related deaths. The CDC encourages healthcare providers to test more people, and to test people in high-risk groups more often. Public health campaigns work to reduce the stigma of HIV and make more people aware of risk factors.

Advances in antiretroviral therapy drugs play a role in helping people survive HIV. These drugs treat HIV by preventing it from reproducing in the body, or interfering with its ability to attack the immune system. They don’t cure HIV, but by suppressing the amount of the virus in the body to undetectable and untransmittable levels, they allow people with HIV to remain healthy and avoid infecting others.

Antiretroviral therapy medicines include:

  • Nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors
  • Non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors
  • Integrase inhibitors, also known as integrase strand transfer inhibitors
  • Protease inhibitors
  • Fusion inhibitors
  • CCR5 antagonists and post-attachment inhibitors
  • Attachment inhibitors
  • Pharmacokinetic enhancers

Post-exposure prophylaxis is an emergency antiretroviral treatment taken within 72 hours of a possible HIV exposure to prevent infection.

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Monitoring Selected National HIV Prevention and Care Objectives by Using HIV Surveillance Data