New HIV infections halved in Rakai

The rate of new HIV infections has been reduced by 58 percent since 2011 in Uganda’s Rakai District, dropping from 3.97 per 100 person-years to 1.61 per 100 person-years, Aidsmap reports. Presenting at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI 2018) on 6 March, investigator Joseph Kayaagi said that this reduction in HIV incidence came after large increases in antiretroviral treatment, viral suppression, and male circumcision. The data presented are from the Rakai Community Cohort Study, which involves annual surveys in 30 communities. The study results from 2011 to 2016 have been published; this presentation adds data from 2017. The investigators noted that their findings are among the first to show that combination HIV prevention can successfully reduce HIV incidence in a hyperendemic community (Aidsmap, March 2018).