Prevention in Focus

Spring 2017 

Fast facts: Canada’s HIV treatment cascade and HIV risk estimates

Where is Canada in attaining the UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets?1

  • 80%: the percentage of people in Canada who know they are living with HIV
  • 76%: the percentage of people diagnosed with HIV who are taking HIV treatment (ART)
  • 89%: the percentage of people taking ART who have an undetectable viral load

What is the risk of getting HIV?

Meta-analysis estimates of average per-act HIV transmission risk from different activities:2

  • 1.4%: estimated risk of an HIV-negative person getting HIV through receptive anal sex with an HIV-positive partner
  • 0.11%: estimated risk of an HIV-negative person getting HIV through insertive anal sex with an HIV-positive partner
  • 0.08%: estimated risk of an HIV-negative person getting HIV through receptive vaginal sex with an HIV-positive partner
  • 0.04%: estimated risk of an HIV-negative person getting HIV through insertive vaginal sex with an HIV-positive partner
  • 0.63%: estimated risk of an HIV-negative person getting HIV through sharing a needle with an HIV-positive person.

We now know that when a person with HIV is in regular care, on treatment and has an ongoing undetectable viral load, the risk of transmitting HIV to sexual partners is negligible.

Estimates from the Public Health Agency of Canada tell us that HIV risk is concentrated in key populations:3

  • 2.7×: estimated likelihood of Aboriginal people getting HIV compared to non-aboriginal Canadians
  • 6.4×: estimated likelihood of Canadians born in an HIV-endemic country getting HIV compared to other Canadians
  • 59×: estimated likelihood of people who injects drugs getting HIV compared to people who do not inject drugs.
  • 131×: estimated likelihood of men who have sex with men getting HIV compared to other men.

References

  • 1. Summary: Measuring Canada’s progress on the 90-90-90 HIV targets. Government of Canada. 1 December 2016. Available from: http://www.healthycanadians.gc.ca/publications/diseases-conditions-maladies-affections/hiv-90-90-90-vih/index-eng.php
  • 2. Patel P, Borkowf CB, Brooks JT, et al. Estimating per-act HIV transmission risk: a systematic review. AIDS. 2014 Jun 19;29(10):1509–10.
  • 3. Yang Q, Ogunnaike-Cooke S, Halverson J, et al. Estimated national HIV incidence rates among key sub-populations in Canada, 2014. Presented at 25th Annual Canadian Conference on HIV/AIDS Research (CAHR), 12–15 May 2016, Winnipeg, Canada. Abstract EPH3.5.