US Fails to Meet HIV Reduction Goals Set by NHAS

The United States decreased the rate of HIV incidence and transmission, but not enough to meet the goals outlined in 2010.

Although there was a decrease in HIV incidence and transmissions in recent years, a study showed that the United States fell short of the goals outlined in 2010 by the National HIV/AIDS strategy (NHAS).

The 2010 NHAS outlined a 25% reduction in HIV incidence and a 30% reduction in the rate of HIV transmission by 2015. According to a study published in AIDS and Behavior, the United States reduced HIV incidence by 11% and reduced transmission by 17%.

"The good news is that we appear to have made important strides in the prevention of HIV and the reduction of HIV transmission rates in the United States; unfortunately, these key gains only got us roughly halfway to the 2015 goal line," said study senior author David Holtgrave, PhD. "After the release of the first National HIV/AIDS strategy, researchers cautioned that failure to expand diagnostic, prevention and care services to necessary levels would result in underachievement on the NHAS goals for 2015. Our analysis suggests that is just what happened."

Researchers used mathematical modeling to estimate HIV incidence and rate of transmission for 2015. These estimates were used in order to calculate the change between 2010 and 2015.

Researchers based these calculations on data published by the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention on HIV prevalence and mortality from 2007 to 2012, along with previously published estimates of HIV incidence from 2008 to 2012.

According to the study, changes from 2010 to 2012 were extrapolated from 2013 to 2015. Researchers found that in 2015, there were approximately 33,218 new HIV infections, a reduction of 11.1% from the 37,366 new infections in 2010.

Researchers found that the HIV transmission rate was approximately 2.61 in 2015, which was a reduction of 17.3 in 2010.

"Our models indicate that the country's incremental progress in reducing new HIV infections was not enough to achieve the NHAS targets for 2015," concluded study lead Robert Bonacci, MPH. "Going forward, as we implement the recently released updated NHAS for 2020, we must take a critical look at the past five years and apply the lessons learned to maximize the impact on our communities most affected by HIV."