HIV and Hispanic/Latino Gay and Bisexual Men: Viral Suppression

Viral suppression is one of the six Ending the HIV Epidemic in the U.S. indicators. Viral suppression refers to the percentage of people with diagnosed HIV who have less than 200 copies of HIV per milliliter of blood.

EHE goal: increase the percentage of people with HIV who have are virally suppressed to 95 percent by 2025.
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It is important for Hispanic/Latino gay and bisexual men to know their HIV status so they can take medicine to treat HIV if they have the virus. Taking HIV medicine every day can make the viral load undetectable. People who get and keep an undetectable viral load (or remain virally suppressed) can stay healthy for many years and have effectively no risk of transmitting HIV to their sex partners.

Hispanic/Latino Gay and Bisexual Men with Diagnosed HIV in 44 States and the District of Columbia, 2019*

* Hispanic/Latino people can be of any race.
 Had 2 viral load or CD4 tests at least 3 months apart in a year.
 Based on most recent viral load test.

Source: CDC. Monitoring selected national HIV prevention and care objectives by using HIV surveillance data—United States and 6 dependent areas, 2019. HIV Surveillance Supplemental Report 2021;26(2).

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Many people with HIV experience challenges with achieving and maintaining viral suppression over time. Some of these challenges include missing HIV medical appointments, needing but not receiving other important health care services, or missing doses of HIV treatment.

Missed HIV Medical Care Appointments Among Hispanic/Latino Gay and Bisexual Men with Diagnosed HIV in the US, 2019*†

Staying in HIV care is important to achieving and maintaining viral suppression. 

This chart shows 27 percent of Hispanic/Latino gay and bisexual men missed at least 1 medical appointment in the past 12 months compared to 24 percent of people overall. 

* Hispanic/Latino people can be of any race.
 Among people aged 18 and older.

Source: CDC. Medical Monitoring Project.

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Needed HIV Ancillary Care Services Among Hispanic/Latino Gay and Bisexual Men with Diagnosed HIV in the US, 2019*†‡

HIV ancillary care services are essential for supporting people in staying in HIV care and maintaining viral suppression.

This chart shows the top 3 services Hispanic/Latino gay and bisexual men reported needing but not receiving in the past 12 months: dental care, mental health services, and SNAP or WIC.

Nearly half (45%) of all people with HIV needed at least 1 HIV ancillary care service in the past 12 months.

* Hispanic/Latino people can be of any race.
 Among people aged 18 and older.
HIV ancillary care services, such as case management and mental health services, are services that support retention in HIV care.

Source: CDC. Medical Monitoring Project.

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HIV Treatment Among Hispanic/Latino Gay and Bisexual Men with Diagnosed HIV in the US, 2019*†

Taking HIV medicine consistently and as prescribed is the best way to achieve and maintain viral suppression.

This chart shows 52 percent of Hispanic/Latino gay and bisexual men reported taking all of their doses of HIV medicine compared to 61 percent of people overall.

* Hispanic/Latino people can be of any race.
 Among people aged 18 and older.

Source: CDC. Medical Monitoring Project.

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Depression and Anxiety Among Hispanic/Latino Gay and Bisexual Men with Diagnosed HIV in the US, 2019*†

People who experience symptoms of depression or anxiety may face challenges maintaining viral suppression.

This chart shows 23 percent of Hispanic/Latino gay and bisexual men experienced symptoms of depression and anxiety compared to 22 percent of people overall.

* Hispanic/Latino people can be of any race.
 Among people aged 18 and older.

Source: CDC. Medical Monitoring Project.

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Homelessness Among Hispanic/Latino Gay and Bisexual Men with Diagnosed HIV in the US, 2019*†

People who experience homelessness may find it difficult to get HIV care and treatment.

This chart shows 6 percent of Hispanic/Latino gay and bisexual men reported homelessness compared to 9 percent of people overall.

* Hispanic/Latino people can be of any race.
 Among people aged 18 and older.

Source: CDC. Medical Monitoring Project.

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Median HIV Stigma Score Among Hispanic/Latino Gay and Bisexual Men with Diagnosed HIV in the US, 2019*†
This chart shows Hispanic/Latino gay and bisexual men experienced HIV stigma.

NOTE: Ten-item scale ranging from 0 (no stigma) to 100 (high stigma) that measures personalized stigma, disclosure concerns, negative self-image, and perceived public attitudes about people with HIV.

* Hispanic/Latino people can be of any race.
 Among people aged 18 and older.

Source: CDC. Medical Monitoring Project.

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Deaths

In 2019, there were 1,523 deaths among Hispanic/Latino gay and bisexual men with diagnosed HIV in the US and dependent areas. These deaths could be from any cause.

  1. CDC. Diagnoses of HIV infection in the United States and dependent areas, 2019. HIV Surveillance Report 2021;32.
  2. CDC. Estimated HIV incidence and prevalence in the United States, 2015–2019pdf icon. HIV Surveillance Supplemental Report 2021;26(1).
  3. CDC. Monitoring selected national HIV prevention and care objectives by using HIV surveillance data—United States and 6 dependent areas, 2019. HIV Surveillance Supplemental Report 2021;26(2).
  4. CDC. Barriers to antiretroviral therapy adherence among HIV-positive Hispanic and Latino men who have sex with men—United States, 2015–2019. MMWR 2020;69(40):1437-42.
  5. CDC. HIV infection risk, prevention, and testing behaviors among men who have sex with men—National HIV Behavioral Surveillance, 23 U.S. cities, 2017pdf icon. HIV Surveillance Special Report 2019;22.
  6. CDC. HIV care outcomes among men who have sex with men with diagnosed HIV infection—United States, 2015. MMWR 2017;66(37):969-74.
  7. Crepaz N, Mullins M, Higa D, Gunn J, Salabarría-Peña Y. A rapid review of disparities in HIV prevention and care outcomes among Hispanic/Latino men who have sex with men in the United States. AIDS Educ Prev 2021; 33(4):276-89. PubMed abstractexternal icon.
  8. McCree DH, Walker T, DiNenno E, et al. A programmatic approach to address increasing HIV diagnoses among Hispanic/Latino MSM, 2010-2014. Prev Med 2018;114:64-71. PubMed abstractexternal icon.