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Basic Statistics

  Photo of a doctor examining a clipboardHIV and AIDS remain a persistent problem for the United States and countries around the world. While great progress has been made in preventing and treating HIV, there is still much to do. The questions in this section provide a broad overview of the effects of HIV and AIDS in the United States and globally.

How many people become infected with HIV each year in the United States?

About 50,000 people get infected with HIV each year. In 2010, there were around 47,500 new HIV infections in the United States.

How many people are living with HIV in the United States?

About 1.2 million people in the United States were living with HIV at the end of 2012, the most recent year this information was available. Of those people, about 12.8% do not know they are infected.

How does CDC know who is infected but does not know it?

CDC estimates the number of people living with HIV (called prevalence) by using a scientific model. This model helps CDC estimate the number of new HIV infections and how many people are infected but don’t know it. HIV prevalence is the number of people living with HIV infection at a given time, such as at the end of a given year. More information on HIV prevalence.

How does HIV affect different groups of people?

There are different ways to answer this question.

If we look at HIV infection by race and ethnicity, we see that African Americans are most affected by HIV. In 2010, African Americans made up only 12% of the US population, but had 44% of all new HIV infections. Additionally, Hispanic/Latinos are also strongly affected. They make up 17% of the US population, but had 21% of all new HIV infections.

Pie chart title: New HIV Infections by Race/Ethnicity, 2010. Of the 47,500 new HIV infections in 2010: 44% were in African Americans; 31% were in Whites; 21% were in Hispanic/Latinos; 2% were in Asians; 1% were in those of multiple races; Less than 1% were in American Indians/Alaska Natives; Less than 1% were in Native Hawaiians/Other Pacific Islanders

If we look at HIV infections by how people got the virus (transmission category), we see that men who have sex with men (MSM) are most at risk. In 2010, MSM had 63% of all new HIV infections, even though they made up only around 2% of the population. Individuals infected through heterosexual sex made up 25% of all new HIV infections in 2010.

Pie chart title: New HIV Infections by Transmission Category, 2010. Of the 47,400 new HIV infections in 2010: 63% were due to male to male sex; 25% were due to heterosexual contact; 8% were due to injection drug use; 3% were due to male to male sex and injection drug use

Combining those two views allows us to see the most affected populations, by race and by risk factor.

Figure1: Estimated New HIV Infections in the United States, 2010, for the Most Affected Subpopulations

This bar chart shows the number of new HIV infections in 2010 for the most-affected sub-populations. The most new infections occurred among white men who have sex with men, or MSM, (11,200) followed by black MSM (10,600), Hispanic MSM (6,700), black heterosexual women (5,300), black heterosexual men (2,700), white heterosexual women (1,300), Hispanic heterosexual women (1,200), black male injection drug users, or IDU, (1,100) and black female IDU (850).

There are also variations by age. Young people, aged 13-24 are especially affected by HIV. They comprised 16% of the US population, but accounted for 26% of all new HIV infections in 2010. All young people are not equally at risk, however. Young MSM, for example, accounted for 72% of all new infections in people aged 13-24, and young, African American MSM are even more severely affected.

CDC’s fact sheets explain the impact of HIV on various populations in the United States.

Do people still die from HIV?

Yes. In the United States, about 13,712 people diagnosed with AIDS died in 2012. HIV disease remains a significant cause of death for certain populations. To date, an estimated 658,507 people diagnosed with AIDS in the United States have died.

Do parts of the country have more HIV than other parts?

Yes. HIV is largely an urban disease, with most cases occurring in metropolitan areas with 500,000 or more people. The South has the highest number of individuals living with HIV, but when you take population size into account, the Northeast has the highest rate of persons living with new HIV infections. (Rates are the number of cases of disease per 100,000 people. Rates allow comparisons between two groups of different sizes.)

HIV and AIDS in the United States by Geographic Distribution is a fact sheet that explains the geography of HIV in the United States.

What about HIV around the world?

HIV disease continues to be a serious health issue for parts of the world. Worldwide, there were about 2 million new cases of HIV in 2014. About 36.9 million people are living with HIV around the world, and as of March 2015, around 15 million people living with HIV were receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART). An estimated 1.2 million people died from AIDS-related illnesses in 2014, and about 39 million people worldwide have died of AIDS-related causes since the epidemic began. Seventy percent of all people living with HIV in 2014 were living in Sub-Saharan Africa, which bears the heaviest burden of HIV/AIDS worldwide. Other regions significantly affected by HIV/AIDS include Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

CDC’s Global AIDS website explains what CDC is doing in countries where HIV and AIDS have had great impact.

Interested in learning more about CDC's HIV statistics?

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