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Monitoring the levels and trends of HIV infection: the Public Health Service's HIV surveillance program.
  • Published Date:
    1988 May-Jun
  • Source:
    Public Health Rep. 103(3):213-220
  • Language:
Filetype[PDF-1.54 MB]

  • Alternative Title:
    Public Health Rep
  • Description:
    A comprehensive, multifaceted approach to HIV surveillance is needed to provide the information necessary for public health management and policy. Because HIV infection is not readily or uniformly ascertained, survey methods and sentinel surveillance approaches must be used. At least some of the surveys must be blinded, that is, anonymous and unlinked to identifiable persons, to avoid the uninterpretable impact of self-selection bias that could lead to both significant underestimates and occasional overestimates of HIV prevalence. Other surveys must be nonblinded, with careful interviews of volunteer participants to evaluate risk factors for HIV infection. These various surveys must continue over time to evaluate trends in infection. A comprehensive family of complementary HIV surveys and studies and a national household-based HIV seroprevalence survey have been undertaken by the Public Health Service in collaboration with other Federal agencies, State and local health departments, blood collection agencies, and medical research institutions. These projects focus on accessible segments of the general population, childbearing women, persons at high risk for HIV, and persons in special settings such as prisons and colleges. This comprehensive surveillance approach will help monitor the levels and trends of HIV infection in the United States and help prioritize, target, and evaluate HIV prevention activities.
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