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Approximately 1.1 million persons in the United States are currently living with HIV, and more than 700 000 persons have died of AIDS since the first cases were reported in 1981. There were approximately 38 300 new diagnoses of HIV infection in 2017. The estimated prevalence of HIV infection among persons 13 years and older in the United States is 0.4%, and data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show a significant increase in HIV diagnoses starting at age 15 years. An estimated 8700 women living with HIV give birth each year in the United States. HIV can be transmitted from mother to child during pregnancy, labor, delivery, and breastfeeding. The incidence of perinatal HIV infection in the United States peaked in 1992 and has declined significantly following the implementation of routine prenatal HIV screening and the use of effective therapies and precautions to prevent mother-to-child transmission.
To update the 2013 US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommendation on screening for HIV infection in adolescents, adults, and pregnant women.
The USPSTF reviewed the evidence on the benefits and harms of screening for HIV infection in nonpregnant adolescents and adults, the yield of screening for HIV infection at different intervals, the effects of initiating antiretroviral therapy (ART) at a higher vs lower CD4 cell count, and the longer-term harms associated with currently recommended ART regimens. The USPSTF also reviewed the evidence on the benefits (specifically, reduced risk of mother-to-child transmission of HIV infection) and harms of screening for HIV infection in pregnant persons, the yield of repeat screening for HIV at different intervals during pregnancy, the effectiveness of currently recommended ART regimens for reducing mother-to-child transmission of HIV infection, and the harms of ART during pregnancy to the mother and infant.
The USPSTF found convincing evidence that currently recommended HIV tests are highly accurate in diagnosing HIV infection. The USPSTF found convincing evidence that identification and early treatment of HIV infection is of substantial benefit in reducing the risk of AIDS-related events or death. The USPSTF found convincing evidence that the use of ART is of substantial benefit in decreasing the risk of HIV transmission to uninfected sex partners. The USPSTF also found convincing evidence that identification and treatment of pregnant women living with HIV infection is of substantial benefit in reducing the rate of mother-to-child transmission. The USPSTF found adequate evidence that ART is associated with some harms, including neuropsychiatric, renal, and hepatic harms, and an increased risk of preterm birth in pregnant women. The USPSTF concludes with high certainty that the net benefit of screening for HIV infection in adolescents, adults, and pregnant women is substantial.
Conclusions and Recommendation
The USPSTF recommends screening for HIV infection in adolescents and adults aged 15 to 65 years. Younger adolescents and older adults who are at increased risk of infection should also be screened. (A recommendation) The USPSTF recommends screening for HIV infection in all pregnant persons, including those who present in labor or at delivery whose HIV status is unknown. (A recommendation)
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CME Disclosure Statement: Unless noted, all individuals in control of content reported no relevant financial relationships. If applicable, all relevant financial relationships have been mitigated.
Corresponding Author: Douglas K. Owens, MD, MS, Stanford University, 616 Serra St, Encina Hall, Room C336, Stanford, CA 94305-6019 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Published Online: June 11, 2019. doi:10.1001/jama.2019.6587
The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) members: Douglas K. Owens, MD, MS; Karina W. Davidson, PhD, MASc; Alex H. Krist, MD, MPH; Michael J. Barry, MD; Michael Cabana, MD, MA, MPH; Aaron B. Caughey, MD, PhD; Susan J. Curry, PhD; Chyke A. Doubeni, MD, MPH; John W. Epling Jr, MD, MSEd; Martha Kubik, PhD, RN; C. Seth Landefeld, MD; Carol M. Mangione, MD, MSPH; Lori Pbert, PhD; Michael Silverstein, MD, MPH; Melissa A. Simon, MD, MPH; Chien-Wen Tseng, MD, MPH, MSEE; John B. Wong, MD.
Affiliations of The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) members: Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto, California (Owens); Stanford University, Stanford, California (Owens); Feinstein Institute for Medical Research at Northwell Health, Manhasset, New York (Davidson); Fairfax Family Practice Residency, Fairfax, Virginia (Krist); Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond (Krist); Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts (Barry); University of California, San Francisco (Cabana); Oregon Health & Science University, Portland (Caughey); University of Iowa, Iowa City (Curry); University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (Doubeni); Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, Roanoke (Epling Jr); Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Kubik); University of Alabama at Birmingham (Landefeld); University of California, Los Angeles (Mangione); University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester (Pbert); Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts (Silverstein); Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois (Simon); University of Hawaii, Honolulu (Tseng); Pacific Health Research and Education Institute, Honolulu, Hawaii (Tseng); Tufts University, Medford, Massachusetts (Wong).
Author Contributions: Dr Owens had full access to all of the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis. The USPSTF members contributed equally to the recommendation statement.
Conflict of Interest Disclosures: All authors have completed and submitted the ICMJE Form for Disclosure of Potential Conflicts of Interest. Authors followed the policy regarding conflicts of interest described at https://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/Page/Name/conflict-of-interest-disclosures. All members of the USPSTF receive travel reimbursement and an honorarium for participating in USPSTF meetings.
Funding/Support: The USPSTF is an independent, voluntary body. The US Congress mandates that the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) support the operations of the USPSTF.
Role of the Funder/Sponsor: AHRQ staff assisted in the following: development and review of the research plan, commission of the systematic evidence review from an Evidence-based Practice Center, coordination of expert review and public comment of the draft evidence report and draft recommendation statement, and the writing and preparation of the final recommendation statement and its submission for publication. AHRQ staff had no role in the approval of the final recommendation statement or the decision to submit for publication.
Disclaimer: Recommendations made by the USPSTF are independent of the US government. They should not be construed as an official position of AHRQ or the US Department of Health and Human Services.
Additional Contributions: We thank Howard Tracer, MD (AHRQ), who contributed to the writing of the manuscript, and Lisa Nicolella, MA (AHRQ), who assisted with coordination and editing.
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