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Human Immunodeficiency Virus Continuum of Care in 11 European Union Countries at the End of 2016 Overall and by Key Population: Have We Made Progress?

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  • European HIV Continuum of Care Working Group
  • Niels Obel (Member of study group)
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BACKGROUND: High uptake of antiretroviral treatment (ART) is essential to reduce human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) transmission and related mortality; however, gaps in care exist. We aimed to construct the continuum of HIV care (CoC) in 2016 in 11 European Union (EU) countries, overall and by key population and sex. To estimate progress toward the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) 90-90-90 target, we compared 2016 to 2013 estimates for the same countries, representing 73% of the population in the region.

METHODS: A CoC with the following 4 stages was constructed: number of people living with HIV (PLHIV); proportion of PLHIV diagnosed; proportion of those diagnosed who ever initiated ART; and proportion of those ever treated who achieved viral suppression at their last visit.

RESULTS: We estimated that 87% of PLHIV were diagnosed; 92% of those diagnosed had ever initiated ART; and 91% of those ever on ART, or 73% of all PLHIV, were virally suppressed. Corresponding figures for men having sex with men were: 86%, 93%, 93%, 74%; for people who inject drugs: 94%, 88%, 85%, 70%; and for heterosexuals: 86%, 92%, 91%, 72%. The proportion suppressed of all PLHIV ranged from 59% to 86% across countries.

CONCLUSIONS: The EU is close to the 90-90-90 target and achieved the UNAIDS target of 73% of all PLHIV virally suppressed, significant progress since 2013 when 60% of all PLHIV were virally suppressed. Strengthening of testing programs and treatment support, along with prevention interventions, are needed to achieve HIV epidemic control.

Original languageEnglish
JournalClinical infectious diseases : an official publication of the Infectious Diseases Society of America
Issue number11
Pages (from-to)2905-2916
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 31 Dec 2020

ID: 62273282