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HIV Prevention in the United States:

Expanding the Impact

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The Scope and Impact of HIV in the United States

New Infections and Overall Burden

Since the height of the epidemic in the mid-1980s, the annual number of new HIV infections in the United States has been reduced by more than two-thirds, from roughly 130,000 to 50,000 annually.2 As a result of treatment advances since the late 1990s, the number of people living with HIV (HIV prevalence) has increased dramatically.1 Yet, despite increasing HIV prevalence and more opportunities for HIV transmission, the number of new infections has been relatively stable since the mid-1990s.2

HIV Prevalence and New Infections, 1980-2010
This graph shows the HIV prevalence and new infections in the United States, from 1980 to 2010. The number of people living with HIV has climbed steadily in this period, with the exception of 1989 - 1995, when there was a plateau around 700,000 cases. There were fewer than 100,000 individuals living with HIV in 1980, and approximately 1.1 million in 2010. Three methodologies were used to estimate new cases of HIV: from 1980 through 2004, new infections were estimated using back-calculation methodology; in 2007, new HIV infections were calculated using the original incidence surveillance methodology; and from 2007 through 2010, new HIV infections were calculated using an updated incidence surveillance methodology. New HIV infections peaked in 1984 and 1985 approximately 130,000 and are now roughly stable at approximately 50,000. (Download High Resolution Version)

Heavily Affected Subgroups

U.S. Subpopulations with the Largest Numbers of Estimated New HIV Infections, 2010
This bar chart shows estimated new HIV infections in 2009 by race/ethnicity, risk group, and gender for the most-affected subpopulations in the United States. Gay and bisexual men of all races and black heterosexual women and men account for the greatest number of new HIV infections in the United States. Specifically, the chart shows that there were: 11,200 infections among white men who have sex with men (MSM); 10,600 infections among black MSM; 6,700 infections among Hispanic MSM; 5,300 infections among black heterosexual women; 2,700 infections among black heterosexual men; 1,300 infections among white heterosexual women; 1,200 infections among Hispanic heterosexual women; 1,100 infections among black male injection drug users (IDUs); 850 infections among black female IDUs; 780 new infections among Hispanic heterosexual men. (Download High Resolution Version)

By transmission category, the largest number of new HIV infections currently occurs among men who have sex with men (MSM) of all races and ethnicities, followed by African American heterosexual women. By race/ ethnicity overall, African Americans are the most heavily affected, followed by Latinos.2

Geography of the U.S. Epidemic

AIDS Cases and Rates (per 100,000 population), by Region, 2011
This graphic shows a map of the United States divided into 4 regions.  The overall national number of new AIDS diagnoses in 2011 was 32,052, a rate of 10.3 per 100,000 people.  In the Northeast Region, there were 6,849 AIDS cases, a rate of 12.3 per 100,000 people.  In the South Region, there were 15,855 AIDS cases, a rate of 13.7 per 100,000 people.  In the West Region, there were 5,472 AIDS cases, a rate of 7.5 per 100,000 people.  In the Midwest Region, there were 3,876 AIDS cases, a rate of 5.8 per 100,000 people. (Download High Resolution Version)

HIV touches Americans in every corner of the nation. Because of differences in HIV reporting practices among states, national surveillance data on AIDS cases currently provide the clearest picture of the regional impact of the epidemic.

According to these data, by region, both the number of people diagnosed with AIDS and the rate of AIDS diagnoses (number of diagnoses per 100,000 people) is highest in the South (15,855 diagnoses or 13.7 per 100,000 people). Next highest is the Northeast (6,849; 12.3), followed by the West (5,472; 7.5) and the Midwest (3,876; 5.8).

From 2008 through 2011, rates declined in the Northeast and the South, and remained fairly stable in the Midwest and the West.

HIV remains mainly an urban disease, with the majority of individuals diagnosed with AIDS in 2010 residing in areas with 500,000 or more people. Areas hardest hit (by ranking of AIDS cases per 100,000 people) include Baton Rouge, LA; Miami, FL; Atlanta, GA; New Orleans, LA and Baltimore, MD.3

 
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