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Surveillance Open Access
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Abstract

Background

Community-based HIV testing services combined with the use of point-of-care tests (POCT) have the potential to improve early diagnosis through increasing availability, accessibility and uptake of HIV testing.

Aim

To describe community-based HIV testing activity in Catalonia, Spain, from 1995 to 2018, and to evaluate the impact of HIV POCT on the HIV continuum of care.

Methods

A community-based network of voluntary counselling and testing services in Catalonia, Spain has been collecting systematic data on activity, process and results since 1995. A descriptive analysis was performed on pooled data, describing the data in terms of people tested and reactive screening test results.

Results

Between 1995 and 2018, 125,876 HIV tests were performed (2.1% reactive). Since the introduction of HIV POCT in 2007, a large increase in the number of tests performed was observed, reaching 14,537 tests alone in 2018 (1.3% reactive). Men who have sex with men (MSM), as a proportion of all people tested, has increased greatly over time reaching 74.7% in 2018. The highest percentage of reactive tests was found in people who inject drugs followed by MSM. The contribution of community-based HIV testing to the overall total notified cases in the Catalonia HIV registry has gradually increased, reaching 37.9% in 2018, and 70% of all MSM cases. In 2018, the percentage of individuals with a reactive screening test who were linked to care was 89.0%.

Conclusion

Our study reinforces the important role that community-based HIV POCT has on the diagnosis of HIV in key populations.

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/content/10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2020.25.43.1900424
2020-10-29
2020-11-27
http://instance.metastore.ingenta.com/content/10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2020.25.43.1900424
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