Effect of sociodemographic factors on survival of people living with HIV

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Abstract

Purpose of review

The purpose is to describe and understand the sociodemographic determinants of survival in people living with HIV within high-income countries in the context of the current recommendation of universal antiretroviral therapy for all HIV-infected persons, irrespective of their CD4+ cell count.

Recent findings

Survival rates in people living with HIV have experienced remarkable increases in the last decade because of more efficacious and well tolerated treatments. Still, these improvements are unevenly distributed between regions across the world as well as within regions. HIV outcomes are heavily influenced by what are known as the ‘social determinants’ of health which have traditionally encompassed the gender, race/ethnicity, and socioeconomic axes. The evidence that these social determinants are now more important than before (more and earlier interventions are now available), has become stronger in the last 2 years.

Summary

Because antiretroviral therapy is now recommended for all HIV-infected persons, sociodemographic factors limiting access to testing, treatment, and retention in care will undoubtedly jeopardize the UNAIDS aspirational objective to end AIDS by 2030. Innovative interventions targeting individuals with social vulnerability are urgently needed to ensure that social inequalities do not continue to be linked with higher mortality.

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