U.S. Health Centers Not Routinely Testing for HIV
January 16, 2013
The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) reported that only 20 percent of Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)-funded clinics adhered to CDC recommendations to provide routine HIV testing for all patients ages 13 to 64. More than half (55 percent) of the clinics followed US Preventive Services Task Force guidelines and focused HIV testing efforts on high-risk populations. Another 24 percent of HRSA-funded clinics offered HIV testing only to patients with HIV symptoms or those who requested HIV testing. One percent of the clinics tested all adult patients for HIV.
OIG based these estimates on a 2011 survey of 500 randomly selected HRSA-funded health centers. In 2011, these safety net clinics delivered primary care to more than 17 million patients in community health, migrant health, homeless health, and public housing settings. The centers attributed their failure to adhere to CDC recommendations to the lack of funding for the clinics and patients' inability to pay for HIV testing.View Full Article
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