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HIV Testing Outcomes in CDC-Funded Health Departments During COVID-19

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Abstract and Figures

The decrease in the number of tests as a result of COVID-19 poses a challenge to Ending the HIV Epidemic in the U.S. (EHE)—a national initiative that aims to end the HIV epidemic by 2030. Testing strategies need to be ramped up to cover this decrease in testing while adapting to the continuing COVID-19 environment.
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NATIONAL CENTER FOR HIV,
VIRAL HEPATITIS, STD, AND
TB PREVENTION
HIV Testing Outcomes in CDC-Funded Health Departments During COVID-19
Deesha Patel, MPH1; Weston O. Williams, PhD2; Carolyn Wright, BS1; Nicole Taylor-Aidoo, MS3; Wei Song, PhD1; Angele Marandet, MPH1; Elizabeth A. DiNenno, PhD1
1Division of HIV Prevention, CDC; 2Public Health Analytic Consulting Services, Inc.; 3Keymind, A Division of Axiom Resource Management, Inc.
Compared to 2019, health departments in 2020
during the COVID-19 pandemic reported:
Over one million fewer CDC-funded HIV tests
Fewer persons identified with newly diagnosed
HIV
BACKGROUND
The Division of HIV Prevention (DHP)
funds health departments to provide
HIV prevention services
HIV prevention services include HIV testing, linkage to
HIV medical care, and referral to and provision of
essential support services
Many organizations have reported
interruptions in their programs during
the COVID-19 pandemic
Aim: To describe the changes in HIV
testing outcomes in CDC-funded health
departments from 2019 to 2020 during
the COVID-19 pandemic
METHODS
Data sources
National HIV Prevention Program Monitoring and
Evaluation (NHM&E) system
Provisional 2020 data
CDC COVID-19 Case Surveillance Public Use Data with
Geography Data Profile
Analysis
CDC-funded HIV tests (#)
Percent change
Persons newly diagnosed with HIV (#)
Percent change
Newly diagnosed positivity (%)
Rate ratio
Persons with new diagnoses linked to HIV medical
care in 30 days (%)
Rate ratio
RESULTS
# of CDC-funded HIV tests: reduction of
46.6%
2019: 2,301,669 tests
2020: 1,228,142 tests
# of persons newly diagnosed with HIV:
reduction of 29.7%
2019: 7,692 persons
2020: 5,409 persons
However, % positivity was higher in 2020 (0.4%) than in
2019 (0.3%) (RR=1.32, 95% CI: 1.02-1.70)
% of persons with new diagnoses linked to
HIV medical care in 30 days: non-
significant increase
2019: 68.9%
2020: 71.6%
RR=1.04 (95% CI: 0.91-1.19)
CONCLUSIONS
The decrease in the number of tests poses
a challenge to Ending the HIV Epidemic in
the U.S. (EHE)a national initiative that
aims to end the HIV epidemic by 2030
Testing strategies need to be ramped up to
cover this decrease in testing while
adapting to the continuing COVID-19
environment
Expanding self-testing
Increasing routine screening in healthcare
Awareness campaigns
CONTACT INFO
Deesha Patel
vnm2@cdc.gov
Figure. Numbers of CDC-Funded HIV Tests, Persons Newly Diagnosed with HIV, and Persons with
New Diagnoses Linked to HIV Medical Care in 30 Days and Number of Confirmed COVID
Diagnoses, By Month, 2019-2020
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