In 2018, NHS England policy changed to provide antiretroviral therapy to HIV-positive patients from the time of diagnosis, instead of waiting for signs of immune system damage.
Official figures show significant falls in new diagnoses in most of the UK. They are expected to show further gains from increasing use of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), using drug treatments also used to treat HIV infection.
However, despite progress in preventing, detecting and treating HIV, there were 1.7m new infections around the world in 2018 and around 38m people globally are now living with the infection.A central World Health Organization (WHO) aim is to support self-testing so people living with HIV know their status and can receive treatment that prevents the virus from spreading.
This module reviews important developments, including new guidance on Best Practice in HIV Prescribing issued in October 2019 and recent confirmation that PrEP should be routinely available in England from April 2020.