Map of life expectancy at birth from Global Education Project.

Monday, June 29, 2015

No, it isn't over

There are about 35 million people living with HIV on the planet, and fewer than half of them are receiving treatment. New infections continue to occur, people continue to die of AIDS, and by the way this is true in the U S of A.

According to the best current estimates, in the U.S. about 86% of people who are HIV infected know it. Of these, less than half are getting medical care for HIV meaning that 60% of people living with HIV in the U.S. are not getting any treatment. Since not everyone who is prescribed ARVs achieves viral suppression, we end up with only 30% of HIV+ people who don't have detectable virus in their bloodstreams.

That means the remaining 70% are at risk of getting opportunistic infections and other symptoms of HIV disease, and of infecting others. Right now the epidemic highly disproportionately affects African Americans, and to a lesser extent Latinos, which is probably a major reason why it doesn't get a whole lot of attention any more. But it is still an urgent problem. And by the way, in states that have refused to accept the Medicaid expansion, a lot of these people are uninsured. Which means they can't even afford the medications. Very wise fiscal conservatism, Republicans.


Don Quixote said...

The thing that amazes me about Republicans in America in 2015 is this: how can an entire group of people be ethically and morally bankrupt on EVERY single issue, major or minor? Sheesh.

Chad Johns said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chad Johns said...

Hi Cervantes,

I think that interacting with an application that influences self-care among people living with HIV or interested in HIV prevention can really take flight. I say this because I feel that HIV is still such a taboo subject, especially here in the U.S. and among the population that it affects. When I don't feel comfortable discussing a personal issue or health issue with a doctor I don't know or even close friends and family, I tend to just shy away from the topic all together. I would feel much better educating myself about it and learning how other people live with it either through an app or internet research of my own. An app developed specifically for the prevention and treatment of HIV sounds like a stellar idea; placing HIV education and treatment options in the palms of most everyone's hand could have a major impact of the progression of this type of infection. I believe the health care sector needs to jump on the technology train using any and every avenue that is safe and secure. Perhaps if healthcare providers were to push out education in the form of apps and use other terms to describe STD's- like STI's instead- society would have an easier time embracing the facts and treatment options available.