Today, Mayor Adrian M. Fenty, Department of Health (DOH) Officials, released District of Columbia HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, STD and TB Epidemiology Report 2009 Update. The report is part of the District’s overall effort to enhance data collection and analysis in an effort to provide effective public health programming for all health issues facing DC residents. This is the third annual report on HIV/AIDS data and the first report that incorporates data on other sexually transmitted diseases.
“There is evidence that our city – government and community together – are making progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS. For the first time, we can report that there is a decline in new AIDS cases in the District of Columbia,” said Mayor Fenty. “Armed with the best data available, we can do more to improve the health of all District residents.”
The District of Columbia HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, STD and TB Epidemiology Report 2009 Update offers the first ever snapshots on all four of these diseases and how they relate to each other. The Update highlights progress the District has made to reduce the burden of these diseases on District residents:
- The number of new AIDS cases declined 33 percent from 786 in 2004 to 525 in 2008.
- From 2004 to 2008, there was a 36 percent increase in the people entering HIV medical care within 3 months.From 2004 to 2007, there was a 30 percent decrease in DC residents dying with AIDS.
- With new STD tests and voluntary testing in schools and communities, from 2005 to 2008, the number of new Chlamydia cases doubled and gonorrhea by one-third.
- From 2004 to 2008, the number of new TB cases decreased by 36 percent with DC’s rate of TB falling below Philadelphia and New York.
- The first ever data on adult hepatitis shows approximately 15,000 people in DC living with chronic hepatitis C, hepatitis B or both
DC continues to increase HIV testing supporting nearly 95,000 tests in 2009, double the number from 2006. Since 2007, the Department of Health has doubled the number of residents receiving free HIV medications. Fighting against HIV and STDS, DC distributed 3.5 million free condoms in 2009. DC reached 5,000 young people with free voluntary STD testing. DC’s comprehensive needle exchange programs removed over 350,000 needles, enrolled 1,300 new clients and provided HIV testing to 3,000 people and linked 325 to drug treatment.
“Success in the fight against HIV/AIDS and other STDs requires that we continue to offer routine HIV testing through medical providers, improve access to care for people living with HIV and the continuation of our efforts to prevent young people from contracting STDs due to unsafe sexual practices,” says Dr. Pierre Vigilance, Director of the Department of Health. “As more of us take the essential steps to protect ourselves, get tested and get the results as part of our regular health monitoring, our health as a District will improve.”
To read the report in its entirety, select The District of Columbia HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, STD and TB Epidemiology Report 2009 Update.