Scottish annual surveillance report shows ‘care in Scotland is optimal’, but concern over late diagnoses.


  • Jo Whelan
  • Medical News
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Scotland has maintained the global UNAIDS ‘Fast Track’ HIV 90-90-90 targets that it first met in September 2018, according to Health Protection Scotland’s newly published surveillance report for the full year 2018.

  • As of 31 December 2018, there were an estimated 5,881 people living with HIV in Scotland, of whom 91% (5,352) have been diagnosed.
  • Of those with diagnosed HIV, 92% (4,913) are attending specialist HIV services, and 4,799 (98%) are receiving ART.
  • Ninety-four per cent of patients receiving ART (4,530) have achieved an undetectable viral load.
  • Almost three quarters (73%, 3,916) of diagnosed individuals are male and 1,436 are female.

There is concern at the finding that 27% of first-ever diagnoses recorded in 2018 were made at a late stage of infection. Earlier diagnosis of people with HIV arriving in Scotland from outside is a priority, Health Protection Scotland says. This will be achieved through earlier and more frequent testing. Heterosexuals of White Scottish and Black African ethnicity are identified as other key groups for earlier diagnosis.

Another priority is to reduce the number of HIV transmissions, with PrEP a primary strategy among those at highest risk of sexual acquisition.

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