Guidelines recommend HIV testing in indicator conditions in which the prevalence of undiagnosed HIV exceeds 0.1%. We assessed adherence to national recommendations on HIV testing within the acute medical unit in NHS Fife. Secondly, we performed a look-back exercise to identify missed opportunities for HIV diagnosis in individuals who presented at a late stage of infection.


Data were collected on admissions over a 24-hour-period during four consecutive weeks in 2018. Case records were reviewed and diagnoses were screened against a list of indicators. Additionally, data were obtained from HPS on late HIV diagnoses within NHS Fife from 2013-2018. Records were interrogated for presentations to healthcare services within the 5 years prior to HIV diagnosis.


In total, 226 patients were admitted during the study period. All patients were white, with median age 68yrs. 101 indicator conditions were identified, relating to 83 patients (36.7%). Bacterial pneumonia was the most frequently identified indicator (n=40). Only 3 patients were offered HIV testing (3.6%).

From 2013-2018, 23 patients were diagnosed with HIV at late stage. The median age at diagnosis was 41yrs and the median CD4 count was 161 cells/mm3. Fifteen patients (65.2%) had presented to hospital in the 5 years preceding diagnosis with an indicator. The most frequently missed indicator was chronic diarrhoea (n=6). Three patients (13%) have died since diagnosis.


* Opportunities to increase uptake of HIV testing among people who may have undiagnosed HIV are being missed

* Further educational initiatives and review of local HIV testing protocols are indicated


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Most cited this month Most Cited RSS feed

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error