SASI has just released a new report analyzing CDC data in MSAs, HIV/AIDS in Metropolitan Statistical Areas – 9 Southern States.

Highlights (or lowlights) from the report include the following:

  • Fifteen of the 20 MSAs … with the highest HIV diagnosis rates were located in a 9 state region of the South (AL, FL, GA, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, and East TX).” Nine of the 10 MSAs with the highest HIV diagnoses rates in 2008-2010 were in these targeted states.
  • Nearly one-half of new HIV diagnoses in 2010 in Jackson MS (45%), Atlanta GA (47%) and Charleston, SC (47%) were among African-American MSM.
  • Baton Rouge LA had the highest percentage of new HIV diagnoses occurring among African American females, at nearly one-third of new diagnoses (31%).

The HIV epidemic is not concentrated solely in MSAs in the South: “the South has a higher proportion of new HIV diagnoses in rural and suburban areas than all other regions and also has higher HIV diagnoses rates per 100,000 population in suburban and rural areas than the other US regions.”

The report highlights the need for more research to better understand the limitations of the HIV care and prevention infrastructure in the South and to determine how these infrastructures are influenced by social determinants of health.  SASI will be moving forward with the SASI Infrastructure Research Study this summer to begin to analyze this question.