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Trends in HIV testing, serial HIV prevalence and HIV incidence among people attending a Center for AIDS Prevention from 1988 to 2003
  1. I Hurtado1,
  2. I Alastrue2,
  3. I Ferreros1,
  4. J del Amo3,
  5. C Santos2,
  6. T Tasa2,
  7. I Hernández-Aguado3,
  8. S Pérez-Hoyos1
  1. 1Unitat d’Epidemiologia i Estadística, Escola Valenciana d’Estudis en Salut (EVES),.Valencia, Spain
  2. 2Centro de Información y Prevención del SIDA de Valencia, Valencia, Spain
  3. 3Dpto Salud Pública, Universidad Miguel Hernández de Alicante, Alicante, Spain
  1. Correspondence to:
 Unitat d’Epidemiologia i Estadística, Escola Valenciana d’Estudis en Salut (EVES), C/Juan de Garay 21, 46017 Valencia, Spain; hurtado_isa{at}


Aim: To analyse trends in HIV testing, serial HIV prevalence and HIV incidence among people who underwent voluntary testing in a Center for AIDS Prevention in Valencia, Spain.

Methods: Open cohort study including all subjects who went to the Center for AIDS Prevention from 1988 to 2003. Information on sociodemographic variables and HIV test results was collected. Serial prevalence and incidence rates were calculated, and joinpoint regression was used to identify changes in trends over time.

Results: 21 241 subjects were analysed; 67% men, 27% injecting drug users (IDUs), 43% heterosexuals and 13% men who have sex with men (MSM). From 1988 to 1990, IDUs accounted for 57% of clinic attenders, decreasing to 14% by 1997–2003, accompanied by an increase in heterosexuals. Overall, HIV prevalence for the whole period was 15%, dropping from 35% to <10% after 1999 and to 3% by 2003, when HIV prevalence was 26% in IDUs, 6% in MSM and 2% in heterosexuals. Total HIV incidence was 2.5%. From 1988 to 1990, HIV incidence ranged from 6% to 8%, and a gradual and progressive decline observed from 1990 onwards. From 1995 onwards, HIV incidence was <2%. The highest incidence rate is seen in IDUs, 7–12% in the first period and 4–5% at the end. Among MSM, a change in the decreasing trend is seen by 1998, and increases in incidence are detected by 2002–3.

Conclusions: Serial HIV prevalence has markedly decreased from 1988 in all transmission categories, although it is still high. With regard to HIV incidence, the drop has been marked too, although a worrying increase, that requires further follow-up, has been detected in MSM in the past 2 years.

  • IDU, injecting drug user
  • MSM, men who have sex with men
  • HAART, highly active antiretroviral treatment
  • CIPS, Centers for AIDS Information and Prevention

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  • Published Online First 6 June 2006

  • Funding: This work was financed through grants from FIS (Fondo de Investigación Sanitaria; 02/0639) and Becas de la Consellería de Sanitat de la Generalitat Valenciana B12/03 and B15/04.

  • Competing interests: None.

  • IH and SP-H designed the study, IH, IF and SP-H carried out the statistical analysis. IA, CS and TT were responsible for the recruitment and data collection. IH-A set up the original study and collaborated in its design. IH, SP-H and JDA wrote and interpreted the results. All the authors revised the different versions of the manuscript.