About the Campaign
Of the more than 1.2 million people in the United States estimated to be living with HIV, approximately 12.8% are unaware of their HIV status. Patients diagnosed through routine HIV screening are able to:
- benefit from medical treatment, which has been proven to reduce morbidity and mortality, and
- avoid unintentionally transmitting HIV to others
Testing can reduce transmission
Many infected persons decrease behaviors that transmit infection to sex or needle-sharing partners once they are aware of their positive HIV status. HIV-infected persons who are unaware of their infection do not reduce risk behaviors.
Early diagnosis and treatment can improve medical outcomes
Because medical treatment that lowers HIV viral load might also reduce risk for transmission to others, early referral to medical care could prevent HIV transmission in communities while reducing a person's risk for HIV-related illness and death.
CDC recommends testing all patients ages 13-64
In September 2006, CDC released Revised Recommendations for HIV Testing of Adults, Adolescents, and Pregnant Women in Health Care Settings. These revised recommendations advise routine HIV screening of adults, adolescents, and pregnant women in health care settings in the United States.
To learn more about the recommendations behind routine HIV screening:
- Learn more about CDC's recommendations on HIV screening
- Read the guidance statements from the American College of Physicians and the HIV Medicine Association on HIV screening
HIV Screening. Standard Care.
Because HIV crosses the boundaries of sexual orientation, gender, age, and ethnicity, risk-based testing fails to identify many people with HIV. Therefore, CDC recommends HIV screening for everyone in all health care settings. The HIV Screening. Standard Care. program, which is a part of CDC's Act Against AIDS communication campaign, provides tools and resources for incorporating HIV testing into primary care settings.
- Page last reviewed: April 6, 2016
- Page last updated: April 6, 2016
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