Benefits of a Routine Opt-Out HIV Testing and Linkage to Care Program for Previously Diagnosed Patients in Publicly Funded Emergency Departments in Houston, TX
Published Date:May 1 2015
Source:J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 69(0 1):S8-15.
Emergency Service, Hospital
Engagement In Care
HIV Linkage To Care
Patient Acceptance Of Health Care
Retention In Care
Pubmed Central ID:PMC4482220
Funding:5P30AI087714/AI/NIAID NIH HHS/United States
5U62PS000775-03/PS/NCHHSTP CDC HHS/United States
P30 AI036211/AI/NIAID NIH HHS/United States
P30 AI087714/AI/NIAID NIH HHS/United States
P30AI036211/AI/NIAID NIH HHS/United States
U62 PS000775/PS/NCHHSTP CDC HHS/United States
The Routine Universal Screening for HIV (RUSH) program provides opt-out HIV testing and linkage to care for emergency department (ED) patients in Harris Health System, Houston, TX. Seventy-five percent of patients testing positive in this program have been previously diagnosed. Whether linkage to care is increased among these patients is unknown.
We conducted a retrospective cohort study of persons tested for HIV in the ED between 2008–2012 but had a previously documented positive HIV test ≥1 year prior. Outcomes were engagement in care (≥1 HIV outpatient visits in 6 months), retention in care (≥2 HIV outpatient visits in 12 months, at least 3 months apart) and virologic suppression (<200 c/ml in 12 months) compared before and after the ED visit. Analysis was conducted using McNemar’s test and multivariate conditional logistic regression.
A total of 202,767 HIV tests identified 2068 previously diagnosed patients. The mean age was 43 years with 65% male and 87% racial and ethnic minorities. Engagement in care increased from 41.3% pre-visit to 58.8% post-visit (P<0.001). Retention in care increased from 32.6% pre-visit to 47.1% post-visit (P<0.001). Virologic suppression increased from 22.8% pre-visit to 34.0% post-visit (P<0.001). Analyses revealed that engagement in care after visit improved most among younger participants (ages 16 to 24), retention improved across all groups, and virologic suppression improved most among participants 25 to 34 years old.
Routine opt-out HIV testing in an ED paired with standardized service linkage improves engagement, retention, and virologic suppression in previously diagnosed patients.
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