Despite the overall effectiveness and availability of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), 1500 HIV-related deaths still occur annually in New York City. In considering ways to further reduce deaths, we assessed the contribution of concurrent HIV/AIDS diagnosis to HIV-related mortality in New York City among persons newly diagnosed with AIDS. We used Cox regression to conduct a retrospective cohort analysis of HIV-related mortality among 15,211 residents age 13+ reported with AIDS to the population-based HIV/AIDS registry between January 2002 and June 2005. Concurrent HIV/AIDS diagnosis was defined as a diagnosis of AIDS occurring within 1 month of initial diagnosis of HIV. HIV-related mortality was 20.2% among persons diagnosed concurrently and 12.2% among those diagnosed nonconcurrently (p < 0.0001). Concurrent HIV/AIDS was associated with more than twice the risk of HIV-related death within the 4 months after diagnosis (hazard ratio [HR] 2.27, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.94-2.65) but no increased risk thereafter (HR 1.12, 95% CI 0.77-1.61). Other significant predictors of death included injection drug use and birth in the Caribbean or Latin America. After 4 years 11.9% of all HIV-related deaths were attributable to a concurrent HIV/AIDS diagnosis. Public health initiatives that facilitate early diagnosis of HIV may reduce HIV-related mortality by giving people the opportunity to initiate care and begin treatment with HAART before immunosuppression places them at risk for opportunistic illness and death.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Infectious Diseases