New study reveals HIV infection decreases in men and increases in women

The content originally appeared on: Dominican Today

SANTO DOMINGO.The National Council for HIV and AIDS (CONAVIHSIDA) presented a report today on the country’s progress in meeting the Global Goals by 2030.

When the data from 2010 is compared with the year 2020, it is perceived that new infections have decreased by 6% in men, while there was an increase of 2% in women. At the same time, children had a decrease of 27.6% between 2010 to 2020.

The majority (83%) of new adult HIV infections in the country in 2020 were among key populations.

These populations, including sex workers, transgender people, and men who have sex with men, make up small proportions of the general population but are at high risk of HIV infection due to discrimination and social exclusion.

The purpose of the 90-90-90 goals is to ensure that 90% of all people living with HIV know their serological status, 90% of all diagnosed people receive sustained antiretroviral therapy (ARV), and 90 % of all people receiving ARVs will be virally suppressed, all by 2020.

According to CONAVIHSIDA executive director Rafael Enriquez Gonzalez, the goal of making people aware of their status has been achieved by 82%. In comparison, the plan seeks for people with HIV to undergo treatment has only reached 51% of this population.

Meanwhile, Yordana Dolores from UNAIDS explained that this report presents, in addition to achievements, some gaps that the country has had, for example, it was intended that there would be a 50% reduction in new cases of the disease from 2010 to 2020, but only 2% has been achieved.

However, in terms of deaths, he emphasized that the country has managed to reduce mortality ahead of time since the country had a goal of 24% by 2023, and to date, a reduction of 25% has been achieved compared to 2010.

Another aspect in which the country has lagged is in vertical transmission, that is, from mother to child, which worldwide the goal is 2%, being in the country at 17%, which is why society must step up in this regard to achieve elimination.

In that sense, Dolores pointed out that it is necessary to promote that women seek the service and have their test done promptly to undergo treatment and that at the time of delivery, a cesarean section is given treatment to the child, in addition to providing follow-up.

In the Dominican Republic, it is estimated that around 74,995 people live with HIV, of which it is expected that by 2020, 67,496 will know their serological status (90%); that of these, 60,746 are in treatment (that is, 90% of those that are identified); and that 54,671 have a suppressed viral load (90% of those under treatment).