AIDS/HIV Previously Underestimated By 40 Percent

New estimates of new AIDS/HIV infection show that least 56,000 people become infected with the AIDS virus every year in the United States — 40 percent more than previous calculations, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Saturday.

Actual infection rates have not risen but better methods of measuring newly diagnosed infections and extrapolating these to the general population led to the higher estimates, which reveals that the HIV epidemic is — and has been — worse than previously known. Results indicate that approximately 56,300 new HIV infections occurred in the United States in 2006.

The CDC’s former estimate was 40,000 infections per year.

The CDC said the epidemic has been stable since the late 1990s, “though the number of new HIV infections remains unacceptably high.”

Analysis shows that new infections peaked in the mid-1980s at approximately 130,000 infections per year and reached a low of about 50,000 in the early 1990s.

Deaths from AIDS: 15,000 to 18,000 Americans die every year of AIDS.

The most severely impacted segments of the population are gay and bisexual men and black men and women.

Worldwide number of people living with HIV in 2007:
33 million people are infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes AIDS.

Worldwide new HIV infections in 2007:
2.5 million (2.1 million adults, 420,000 children)

Worldwide deaths from AIDS:
2.1 million each year. Children account for about 330,000 of AIDS death each year.

Source on worldwide information: