Cost-Effectiveness of CDC Recommended HIV Prevention Strategies Interview with:
Ya-lin (Aileen) Huang, PhD.
Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Atlanta, GA, 30329

Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Dr. Huang: With an estimated 50,000 new HIV infections each year in this country, and no vaccine or cure available yet, prevention is critical. Maximizing the impact of all available prevention strategies could significantly reduce new infections in this country. The purpose of this study is to provide evidence for the cost effectiveness of the interventions recommended under the funding announcement and to highlight where more cost-effectiveness studies may be needed. We limited our scope to the four interventions required under the health department funding announcement, including HIV testing, prevention with HIV-positives and their partners, condom distribution and efforts to align policies with optimal HIV prevention, care and treatment.

Our review provides an updated summary of the published evidence of cost-effectiveness of four key HIV prevention interventions recommended by CDC: HIV testing, prevention with HIV-positives and their partners, condom distribution and policy initiatives. Models suggest that more than 350,000 HIV infections have been avoided because of the nation’s HIV prevention efforts. In addition to lives saved, HIV prevention has also generated substantial economic benefits. For every HIV infection that is prevented, an estimated $402,000 ( is saved in the cost of providing lifetime HIV treatment. It is estimated that HIV prevention efforts have averted more than $125 billion in medical costs since the beginning of the epidemic.

Medical Research: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Dr. Huang: By building upon progress to date and maximizing the impact of the range of proven prevention tools now available, there is more hope than ever before of ending the HIV epidemic in the United States. Through our report, health care providers and patients could learn the HIV prevention activities that have been funded and advocated by the CDC, and where the economic evaluation evidence are that supported those activities.

Medical Research: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Huang: More cost-effectiveness evaluation research is needed in the US for interventions related to prevention for HIV positives, condom distribution, and policy initiatives. However, this descriptive assessment is helpful in supporting policymakers or those charged with HIV resource allocation decisions in several ways.

First, it identifies the body of evidence of cost effectiveness for the various interventions considered. And, where lacking, this review encourages decision-makers to seek local data on the costs and outcomes of HIV programs. These data could then be used to map out an evidenced-based HIV intervention portfolio. Funding decisions are typically influenced by a myriad of factors including historical spending, epidemic data, stakeholder pressures and other non-quantifiable factors; with this study, we expect to further inform this decision-making process.


A Systematic Review on Cost Effectiveness of HIV Prevention Interventions in the United States.

Huang YA, Lasry A, Hutchinson AB, Sansom SL.

Appl Health Econ Health Policy. 2014 Dec 25. [Epub ahead of print]

PMID: 25536927 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

[wysija_form id=”1″] Interview with:, & Ya-lin (Aileen) Huang, PhD. (2015). Cost-Effectiveness of CDC Recommended HIV Prevention Strategies