Death Rate for Blacks Diagnosed With HIV Declines, CDC Report Finds
Between 2008 and 2012, the death rate among blacks in the U.S. who were diagnosed with HIV declined at a greater rate than other racial and ethnic groups, according to a CDC report released Thursday, the Washington Post's "To Your Health" reports (Bernstein/Brown, "To Your Health," Washington Post, 2/5).
The report analyzed data on deaths in the U.S. of individuals ages 13 and older. According to the report, "Deaths of persons with a diagnosis of HIV infection might have resulted from any cause." In addition, the data "include persons with diagnosed HIV infection regardless of stage of disease at diagnosis" (Siddiqi et al., Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, CDC, 2/6).
Researchers found that over the five-year period, the number of deaths among blacks:
- Decreased by 18% overall;
- Decreased by 21% per 100,000 individuals; and
- Decreased by 28% per 1,000 blacks living with HIV.
CDC said, "Although deaths also decreased among other race/ethnicity groups, the decreases generally were greater and more consistent among blacks than among other races/ethnicities." The report did not provide a reason for the larger decline in such rates among blacks.
However, the number of blacks diagnosed with HIV who died in 2012 still was more than the combined number of diagnosed whites or Hispanics who died that year. For example, in 2012:
- 8,165 blacks diagnosed with the virus died, down from 9,920 in 2008;
- 5,426 diagnosed whites died, down from 5,662 in 2008; and
- 2,586 diagnosed Hispanics died, down from 2,949 in 2008 ("To Your Health," Washington Post, 2/5).
In addition, the rate of deaths in 2012 per 1,000 people diagnosed with HIV was 20.5 for blacks, compared with 18 for whites and 14 for Hispanics (Stobbe, AP/Los Angeles Times, 2/5).
Further, the report found that:
- 68.9% of every 100,000 blacks in the U.S. in 2010 had HIV, compared with 8.7 per 100,000 whites;
- 15% of blacks in 2011 were unaware they were infected with HIV, compared with 12% of whites;
- 41% of the estimated 1.2 million individuals in the U.S. living with HIV in 2011 were black, compared with 34% who were white;
- 48% of blacks living with HIV in 2011 were receiving care and 40% had a suppressed viral load, both lower percentages than among whites or Hispanics living with HIV; and
- 77% of blacks diagnosed with HIV in 2012 were linked to care, the lowest percentage among all racial/ethnic groups ("To Your Health," Washington Post, 2/5).