Today, an HIV diagnosis is no longer a death sentence, and people living with the virus are leading longer and healthier lives. In fact, thanks to highly effective medications, those living with HIV who have access to treatment can expect to live nearly as long as the general population.
HIV has been thrust into the spotlight recently, with innovative new therapies becoming available and the President pledging to end transmissions of the virus in the U.S. by 2030.
In just three decades, HIV has gone from an untreatable virus to one that is manageable with the right treatment regimen. Clinicians and people living with HIV can now focus on addressing the quality of life challenges that remain, namely those associated with stigma and the overall impact of lifelong therapy.
Some HIV advances in the past few years include:
• Increased awareness and new information related to transmission – when the virus is undetectable it is untransmittable
• Understanding the challenges facing people living with HIV while taking HIV medications over a lifetime
• New HIV treatment focused on decreasing exposure to the number of antiretroviral medications
Dr. Debbie Hagins, Medical Director of Coastal CARE Clinics in Savannah, Georgia, who is also an Infectious Disease specialist and HIV clinical investigator, research and advances in HIV.