HIV Infection: Screening

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 16th January 2023.

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Photo of David Mundell David Mundell Conservative, Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will expand HIV opt-out testing to local authority areas where there are between two and five per 1,000 people living with HIV.

Photo of Neil O'Brien Neil O'Brien The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

As part of the Government’s HIV Action Plan, NHS England has expanded opt-out human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) testing in accident and emergency departments in the 21 local authority areas across the country with the highest prevalence of HIV, over 5 cases per 1,000 people, a proven effective way to identify new HIV cases. NHS England is investing £20m over 2022 to 2025 to support this activity.

We will be considering the full evidence from the first year of opt-out testing, alongside the data on progress towards our ambition of ending new HIV transmissions in England by 2030, to decide whether we further expand this programme to areas with high HIV prevalence, 2 to 5 cases per 1,000 people. We will also share the findings from the opt-out testing programme with local health systems to inform local decisions on expansion.

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