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Smoking Doubles Risk of Death for People with HIV Taking Antiretroviral Therapy

Smoking doubles the mortality risk for people with HIV taking antiretroviral therapy, a study published recently in AIDS shows. Smokers had an increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease (CVD) and non-AIDS-related cancers, and the life expectancy of a 35-year-old man with HIV was reduced by almost 8 years due to smoking.

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CDC Collaboration Issues New Prevention Recommendations for People with HIV

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in collaboration with several government, professional, and non-profit organizations, last week issued updated recommendations about biomedical, behavioral, and structural interventions to help people with HIV reduce the risk of onward transmission of the virus.

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No New HIV Infections Seen Among San Francisco Kaiser PrEP Users

No new HIV infections have occurred among more than 500 Kaiser Permanente San Francisco members using pre-exposure prophylaxis -- better known as PrEP -- but condom use appears to be declining among a subset of gay men, according to a small survey presented at a December 1 forum commemorating World AIDS Day.

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HIV Has Become More Virulent Over Time, Not Less, European Study Finds

The largest cohort study ever to look at CD4 count and viral loads in HIV positive people around the time of diagnosis has found evidence that HIV -- at least in Europe -- has become more virulent over time. The average time taken to reach a CD4 count below 350 cells/mm3 has halved over the last 25 years, researchers calculate. This conflicts with recently reported findings from Africa suggesting HIV has gotten weaker, suggesting that local conditions may drive viral evolution in opposite directions.

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HIV Drug Therapy: Efavirenz Not Linked to Higher Suicide Risk in D:A:D Cohort

People taking antiretroviral therapy (ART) regimens containing the NNRTI efavirenz (Sustiva) were not more likely to die due to suicide or psychiatric illness than those taking other drugs in the large D:A:D cohort, researchers reported last month at the HIV Drug Therapy 2014 meeting in Glasgow.

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Obamacare Deadline Coming Up, Guide Offers Covered California Advice for HIV, HCV, PrEP

December 15 is the deadline to enroll in Affordable Care Act (ACA or "Obamacare") health plans for insurance coverage starting on January 1, 2015. Finding the right plan can be tricky for people with HIV or hepatitis C, and for those who want coverage for Truvada for pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), but there are resources to help.

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HIV in the UK: 76% Diagnosed, 90% on Treatment, 90% Undetectable

The United Kingdom's annual epidemiological report, released in late November, shows that the country already provides HIV treatment to 90% of people accessing clinical services and that 90% of those on treatment have an undetectable viral load. But the country has a long way to go in ensuring that people with HIV are aware of their HIV status -- only 76% of people living with HIV have been diagnosed. The problem is particularly acute in black African communities, as only 62% of African heterosexual men and 69% of African heterosexual women living with HIV have been diagnosed.

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