New York announces new policy to dramatically reduce HIV incidence by 2020

Charles King summarises new prevention plans for New York State.

Charles King summarises new prevention plans for New York State.

Simon Collins, HIV i-Base

On 13 January 2015, a new strategy was announced to reduce HIV incidence in New York State to 25% of current rates by 2020. [1]

The policy is based on results from a task force convened by the New York State Department of Health (DOH) in October 2014 and enacted by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo. [2, 3] the policy is based on three key goals.

  • To identifying people with HIV who are not yet diagnosed and to link them to health care.
  • To link and retain people in health care who are already diagnosed with HIV, and to increase use of HIV treatment to 85% of people to maximise viral suppression so they remain healthy and prevent further transmission.
  • To facilitate access to Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) for people at high risk of HIV to keep them HIV negative.

Last year, 3000 people were diagnosed with HIV in New York, and the target for 2020 is to reduce this to less than 750, representing a reduction of 75%.

The task force included over 70 activists, health service providers, researchers, and public health professionals and met intensively over the past four months, reviewing over 300 recommendations.

Meeting proceeding are webcast [4] and the concluding statements by activist and co-chair Charles King from Housing Works are especially important. [5]


It is important that there was political leadership and support for this initiative.

Last month, Public Health England reported over 7000 new diagnoses in the UK last year, the majority of which were related to recent infections.

It is time that UK prevention initiatives also set ambitious and achievable targets for reducing new infections. These absolute goals can be used to evaluate efficacy of these programmes.


  1. TAG and Housing Works. Joint Press release. Governor Cuomo’s Ending the Epidemic Task Force Completes Plan to End AIDS in NY State by 2020. (13 January 2015).
  2. Ending the Epidemic Task Force: Recommendations
  3. Albany Governor Cuomo Announces Task Force to Develop Plan to End AIDS Epidemic. (14 October 2014).
  4. Ending the Epidemic Task Force. Meeting materials and webcasts.
  5. Charles King, NY State’s Ending the [AIDS] Epidemic Task Force. Closing remarks (15 January 2015).

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