July 15, 2014
Today, CDC released new data on social determinants of health among adults diagnosed with HIV infection in an HIV surveillance supplemental report. This report highlights the correlations between social determinants of health and HIV diagnoses in the United States.
The report focuses on census tract-level social determinants of health (SDH) among adults diagnosed with HIV in 2010 in 20 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico and presents a snapshot of the environment in which people lived at the time of HIV diagnosis. Specifically, the report looks at four key SDH measures: percentage of the population living below federal poverty, percentage of the population with less than a high school diploma, median household income, and percentage of the population unemployed.
This report found that the highest rates of diagnoses of HIV infection among blacks/African Americans (males, 109.2; females, 40.0), Hispanics/Latinos (males, 35.4; females, 8.4), and whites (males, 20.4; females, 3.9) occurred among persons who lived in census tracts that had the highest proportion of residents living below the federal poverty level (19% or more).
Similarly, persons who lived in census tracts where the largest proportion of residents had less than a high school diploma (24% or more), accounted for the highest rates of diagnoses of HIV infection among blacks/African Americans (males, 91.5; females, 40.6), Hispanic/Latino females (7.1), and whites (males, 16.4; females, 4.1). In contrast, among Hispanic/Latino males, the highest rate of diagnoses of HIV infection was among those who lived in census tracts where less than 7% of the residents had less than a high school diploma.
According to the report, the highest rates of HIV diagnoses for males and females were among those who lived in the census tract with the lowest median household income (less than $36,000).
This report used data from the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey and the National HIV Surveillance System to better understand the underlying factors that may influence health outcomes among persons diagnosed with HIV. By examining the social determinants of health that adversely affect health outcomes, we can help guide additional research and public health strategies to reduce HIV-related health disparities in the United States.