In accordance with the CDC recommendations, we encourage all clinical and non-clinical sites across the State of Pennsylvania to routinely offer HIV tests to all patients aged 13-64 because:
• Every 9.5 minutes, someone in the U.S. is newly infected with HIV. Approximately 56,300 new cases occur annually
• >1 million people in the U.S. are living with HIV. Of those, an estimated 20% are unaware of being infected
• People who are unaware of their status are more likely to transmit HIV to others
• “Predicting” who needs to be tested is very subjective
• Expanded testing will decrease the stigma associated with HIV testing
• It is cost effective to screen for HIV
According to the most recent data collected by the CDC from 34 states, 38% of those diagnosed with HIV received an AIDS diagnosis within a year of their HIV diagnoses, and 45% had an AIDS diagnosis within 3 years of their HIV diagnoses. (MMWR, June 26, 2009 / 58(24);661-665).
As progression to AIDS usually takes an average of ten years, early testing for HIV can potentially reduce morbidity and mortality, while lowering long-term health care costs.