HIV/AIDS Surveillance Program

Mission

The primary goal of the HIV/AIDS surveillance program is to monitor the number of new HIV/AIDS cases in Rhode Island; monitor the changes in the disease transmission among people at high risk for HIV/AIDS infection; and identify HIV/AIDS cases of public health importance to better understand the disease impact. The program helps to assess the disease impact among certain target populations, especially among communities of color, who are disproportionately affected by HIV/AIDS. The HIV/AIDS Surveillance program works closely with several internal partners on projects that contribute to decreasing HIV/AIDS morbidity and mortality in Rhode Island. The HIV/AIDS Surveillance program works closely with HIV Provider Community of Rhode Island to capture important case related data from new and existing HIV/AIDS cases. Data collected as part of the case reports are de-identified, analyzed, and sent to the CDC on a regular basis. Data are also published in the Annual Epidemiological Profile that helps the prevention programs and Rhode Island Community Planning Group (RICPG) to identify target areas. The Profile also provides information directly to community resources so that caseworkers and providers can adequately identify and address HIV/AIDS health concerns among disproportionately affected communities in Rhode Island.

2010 Accomplishments and Milestones

  • Incorporation of new HIV law into specific surveillance activities around peri-natal care, HIV testing reporting from all testing venues, and HIV testing reports.
  • Since 1993, the incidence - the number of new cases of AIDS - and deaths among AIDS cases have decreased dramatically, coinciding with the widespread use of increasingly effective treatments.
  • Among funded testing sites 2,268 HIV tests administered and 46 individuals were found to be positive, 504 Hepatitis C tests were administered and 17 individuals tested positive, 328 first dose of preventive Twinrix vaccine was administered; 272 second doses and 230 third doses.
  • AIDS incidence has decreased by 82% since 1993, declining from 317 new cases in 1993 to 62 new cases in 2009. During the same time period, the AIDS prevalence - the total number of individuals living with AIDS in Rhode Island - has increased more than eight fold, rising from 203 cases in 1993 to 1,745 cases in 2009.
  • Integration of surveillance data into tracking unmet need and sustaining care, such that, we now can integrate data into meaningful treatment and care tools.
  • HIV infection due to intravenous drug use dropped from 50% in 1989, to 16% in 2008, and then to 6% in 2009; indicative that syringe exchange works!