THURSDAY, June 25, 2020 (HealthDay News) — HIV testing occurs at less than 1 percent of physician office and emergency department visits and at less than 3 percent of community health center (CHC) visits, according to research published in the June 26 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Karen W. Hoover, M.D., from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues analyzed data from both the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (2009 to 2016) and the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey to estimate trends in HIV testing at visits by men and nonpregnant women to physician offices, CHCs, and emergency departments.

The researchers found that HIV tests were performed at 0.63 percent of 516 million physician office visits, 2.65 percent of 37 million CHC visits, and 0.55 percent of 87 million emergency department visits. During 2009 to 2016, there was no increase in the percentage of visits with an HIV test at visits to physician offices; increases and slight increases were seen for visits to CHC physicians and to emergency departments during 2009 to 2014 and 2009 to 2017, respectively.

“To end the HIV epidemic, testing of patients seeking care in ambulatory health care settings should be leveraged to increase the percentage of diagnosed infections and reduce HIV transmission,” the authors write.

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