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MMWR News Synopsis for June 22, 2017

HIV Testing, Linkage to HIV Medical Care, and Interviews for Partner Services Among Youths — 61 Health Department Jurisdictions, United States, Puerto Rico, and U.S. Virgin Islands, 2015

CDC Media Relations

Testing is critical for diagnosing HIV in youth and young adults so they can receive medical care and treatment that keeps their infection under control (viral suppression). People who achieve viral suppression live longer, healthier lives and are dramatically less likely to spread HIV to others. In 2015, CDC funded 61 state and local health departments and 123 community-based organizations to provide HIV testing in the United States, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. CDC analyzed data from more than 3 million HIV tests that these organizations provided. The analysis found that 28 percent of these HIV tests were provided to 13- to 24-year-olds; 66 percent whose tests were positive for HIV received medical care within 90 days; and the percentage receiving care in the South – the region most disproportionately affected by HIV – was among the lowest in the nation. The analysis also found that, although 83 percent of new diagnoses in non-healthcare facilities were in young gay and bisexual males, 28 percent of tests were provided to this population. Previous CDC analyses found 70 percent of HIV diagnoses among 13- to 24-year-olds in 2014 were in young gay and bisexual males. CDC also previously estimated that 52 percent of young gay and bisexual males living with HIV in 2014 did not know they were infected, compared with 15 percent of all people living with HIV. CDC recommends that all people ages 13 to 64 be screened for HIV — with testing at least annually for people at high risk — and that some sexually active gay and bisexual males can benefit from more frequent testing (every three to six months).

Evaluation of Placental and Fetal Tissue Specimens for Zika Virus Infection — 50 States and District of Columbia, January–December, 2016

CDC Media Relations

Testing of placental and fetal tissue specimens, including specimens from live births and pregnancy losses, for Zika virus infection can be a valuable too. This testing can confirm whether a woman was infected with Zika virus when results of testing during pregnancy are not definitive, or when testing was not conducted in the optimal time frame.Even though the number of pregnant women who had a Zika diagnosis confirmed through placental testing is low, this type of testing can provide a definitive diagnosis, which can help families and doctors plan the right course of follow-up. Diagnosing Zika virus infection during pregnancy can be complicated because tests may detect previous or current infection with Zika or other related flaviviruses, and sometimes testing is performed outside of the optimal time frame (i.e., the 12 weeks following infection). Zika virus RNA can be detected in placental and fetal tissues, providing another opportunity for diagnosis. This report describes results from CDC’s testing of tissue specimens for Zika virus infection in 2016 and how this testing contributed to the public health response. In the 50 US states and District of Columbia, placental testing confirmed the diagnosis of recent maternal Zika virus infection for 10 percent of live births with possible maternal Zika virus exposure that lacked definitive evidence of a maternal or congenital Zika virus infection.

Screening for Syphilis and Other Sexually Transmitted Infections in Pregnant Women — Guam, 2014

CDC Media Relations

Increased rates of primary and secondary syphilis among women in the United States are leading to more congenital syphilis and putting newborns at risk for severe adverse pregnancy outcomes or perinatal death. CDC researchers examined data from a large public hospital in Guam to determine the prevalence of screening for syphilis, HIV, chlamydia, and gonorrhea among pregnant women, and to identify factors that may affect screening practices. Findings show that while most women received syphilis screening during pregnancy (94 percent), 1 in 3 (33 percent) were not screened early enough to prevent adverse pregnancy outcomes. Women who started their prenatal visits later in pregnancy or who had fewer visits were more likely to have late or no syphilis screening. Many women were also not screened for HIV (31 percent), chlamydia (25 percent), and gonorrhea (26 percent) during pregnancy. These findings underscore the urgent need to screen for syphilis and other sexually transmitted infections during pregnancy and to strengthen programs that provide STD, HIV, and perinatal services, especially in resource-limited areas like Guam. Access to, and use of, quality prenatal care are essential for healthy pregnancies. CDC recommends all women get screened for syphilis at the first prenatal visit. Women at increased risk of infection or living in communities with high prevalence of syphilis should be rescreened at 28-32 weeks’ gestation and again at delivery.

Global Polio Eradication: Progress Toward Containment of Poliovirus Type 2 — Worldwide 2017

Dr. Roland Sutter
Coordinator, Polio Eradication Department
World Health Organization

Effective containment of polioviruses is needed worldwide to secure polio eradication. After the global certification of wild poliovirus type 2 (PV2) eradication in September 2015, and the withdrawal of Sabin PV2 from the trivalent oral poliovirus vaccine in April 2016, PV2 became an eradicated pathogen. To minimize the risk of inadvertent PV2 release, a Global Action Plan (GAP-III) has been prepared. This Plan requires countries to conduct inventories of PV2 materials and implement a “destroy, transfer, or contain” strategy to eliminate or manage the PV2 risks. Countries are completing the inventories, and are either destroying, transferring, or planning to contain all PV2 materials. Seventy-nine facilities (either vaccine production sites or laboratories) in 30 countries were designated as Poliovirus-Essential Facilities that will continue to manipulate PV2. These facilities are expected to adhere to the GAP-III requirements.

Notes from the Field:

  • None

Quick Stats:

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