Introduction It is known that a significant proportion of people within the United Kingdom are unaware of their HIV infection and late diagnosis is associated with HIV related Morbidity and Mortality. The British HIV Association recommend routine HIV screening for patients with an HIV indicator illness. This includes Bacterial Pneumonia, a condition commonly encountered in hospital departments throughout the United Kingdom.
Methods We designed an audit to evaluate the use of routine HIV screening for patients aged 18-50 presenting to the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital with Community Acquired Pneumonia. Using a coding search of all discharges between May 2015 and September 2015, 38 patients were identified. Inclusion criteria required each patient to have either a positive microbiological sample or consolidation present on a chest radiograph. Of the 38 patients identified, 7 were excluded who did not satisfy the minimum inclusion criteria.
Results Of the patients audited, 21 patients (67.7%) did not receive routine screening during their inpatient stay. One patient who was not tested had received testing immediately prior to their acute presentation. Two patients who were not tested had a significant history of intravenous drug use, an independent indicator for routine HIV screening. Of the 10 patients (32.3%) that were successfully screened for HIV, no samples tested positive.
Discussion Routine screening for HIV in all patients with bacterial pneumonia could aid early identification of HIV infection, reducing overall morbidity and mortality. This audit highlights the continuing need for raised awareness of routine HIV screening for patients with HIV indicator conditions, particularly, in areas of low prevalence of HIV infection.
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