• DSHS HIV/STD Program

    Post Office Box 149347, MC 1873
    Austin, Texas 78714

    Phone: (512) 533-3000

    E-mail the HIV/STD Program

    E-mail data requests to HIV/STD Program - This email can be used to request data and statistics on HIV, TB, and STDs in Texas. It cannot be used to get treatment or infection history for individuals, or to request information on programs and services. Please do not include any personal, identifying health information in your email such as HIV status, Date of Birth, Social Security Number, etc.

    For treatment/testing history, please contact your local Health Department.

    For information on HIV testing and services available to Persons Living with HIV and AIDS, please contact your local HIV services organization.

Epi Profile Section 1 - Executive Summary

 

This epidemiologic profile was created to assist planners, public health professionals, policy makers and other stakeholders at the local and state level. It is a snapshot of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) epidemic in Texas at the end of 2016. The data are drawn primarily from routine disease and vital statistics surveillance systems, and supplemented by studies on special populations at disproportionately impacted for HIV and persons living with HIV who are currently in HIV medical care. More detailed information on data sources can be found in Data Sources Used for this Profile.

Over 86,000 Texans are known to be living with HIV. This does not include the nearly 14,315 persons (17.3% of all persons living with HIV) the CDC estimates to be living with HIV and unaware of their infection.[ 1] As HIV treatment improves, persons living with HIV (PLWH) are living longer with the disease. The increase in life expectancy for PLWH, in addition to a stable number of new diagnoses and deaths, has resulted in a steadily increasing number of persons living with HIV.

The annual number of new HIV diagnoses in Texas has been stable for the past decade, with 4,493 new diagnoses in 2016. Gay and bisexual men and other men who have sex with men (MSM) comprise the largest proportion of both people living with HIV and those newly diagnosed, and they are the only group that had an increase in new diagnosis over past 10 years. Rates of new diagnosis was especially high among young MSM and Black MSM and Hispanic MSM. The increase in new diagnosis among young MSM may be driven by increases in new infections and increased HIV testing among young MSM.

Racial and ethnic disparities permeate the HIV epidemic in Texas. Black and Hispanic Texans have higher rates of HIV diagnoses than White Texans. Black Texans living with HIV experience higher rates of STD co-infections (see section Co-Morbidities), which has a negative impact on their health and increases the risk of onward HIV transmission. Once Black and Hispanic Texans are diagnosed with HIV, they face challenges in accessing regular medical care and achieving viral suppression (see section The HIV Care Continuum in Texas).

It’s important to note that the overall rate of new diagnosis in Black Texans has decreased. This is due in large part to a sizable decline in new diagnoses in Black women. Despite this decrease, rates of new HIV diagnosis and HIV prevalence remain highest among Black Texans. We estimate that over 3% of young Black MSM age 18-24 in Texas were diagnosed with HIV in 2016 (see section Men who have sex with Men ).

In order to reduce new HIV infections, we must 1) reduce the number of people living with HIV who are unaware of their infections and 2) increase the number of people with HIV infections who are on treatment that suppresses the amount of HIV circulating in their system (known as having a suppressed HIV viral load (VL)). Transmission of HIV is most likely when someone is unaware of their HIV status. This is because many people who know they are HIV-positive will take actions to protect the health of their partners.  Also, those who are unaware of their status may not be receiving the treatment they need to suppress their viral load levels. Viral load suppression not only improves the health of persons with HIV infection, but also eliminates HIV transmission to others.

The longer people with HIV live, the longer they need to practice HIV prevention methods that reduce the risk of HIV transmission. In the past, HIV prevention methods focused on reducing high-risk behaviors, with a focus on condomless sex. However, these behavioral risk reduction programs are resource-intensive to implement and difficult to scale to a population level. Additionally, permanent behavior change at the individual level can be difficult to achieve and sustain over time (see section Indicators of HIV-Risk in Persons Living with HIV Currently in Care ).

A variety of methods to prevent HIV are now available in addition to behavioral risk reduction and barrier methods (i.e. condoms). A once-daily pill, called Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (or PrEP) can be used by HIV-negative persons to greatly reduce their risk of acquiring HIV through any mode of transmission, including injection drug use and sexual contact. New evidence also shows that PLWH who have achieved viral suppression have effectively no risk of transmitting HIV to others. Our current challenge is to ensure that all PLWH and persons disproportionately impacted by HIV can access and afford the prevention methods most appropriate for them.

This report does not describe all aspects of the HIV epidemic in Texas; rather, our goal is to provide a broad overview and basic understanding of where we are today. A detailed exploration of factors which contribute to racial and ethnic disparities in the HIV epidemic is outside the scope of this report. More information can be found at CDC’s National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STDs and TB Prevention's website. Persons interested in more detailed analysis or data on specific populations are welcome to send their data requests to the HIV/STD/TB Epidemiology team at TBHIVSTDdata@dshs.texas.gov. You can also produce custom tables at the Center for Health Statistics’ Texas Health Data Site:

New HIV Diagnoses in Texas

People Living with HIV in Texas

 

Note 1. Satcher Johnson A, Song R, Hall HI. Estimated HIV Incidence, Prevalence, and Undiagnosed Infections in US States and Washington, DC, 2010-2014. J Acquir Immune Defic Syn. 2017 Oct 1;76(2):116-122.



Epi Profile

Table of Contents | 1. Executive Summary | 2. New HIV Diagnoses | 3. Persons Living with HIV | 4. Co-Morbidities | 5. HIV/AIDS Deaths | 6. HIV Incidence | 7. Focused and Routine HIV Testing | 8. Indicators of HIV Risk in HIV-negative Persons at High Risk for HIV | 9. Indicators of HIV Risk in PLWH Currently in Care | 10. Men Who Have Sex With Men (MSM) | 11. HIV Treatment Cascade | Data Sources and Notes


Last updated December 21, 2017