Background: The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends universal human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) testing for patients aged 13-64 years in health care settings where the seroprevalence is>0.1%. Rapid HIV testing has several advantages; however, recent studies have raised concerns about false positives in populations with low seroprevalence.
Study objectives: To determine the seroprevalence of HIV in our Emergency Department (ED) population, understand patient preferences toward rapid testing in the ED, and evaluate the performance of a rapid oral HIV test.
Methods: A serosurvey offered oral rapid HIV 1/2 testing (OraQuick ADVANCE, Bethlehem, PA) to a convenience sample of 1348 ED patients beginning August 2008. Subjects declining participation were asked to complete an opt-out survey.
Results: 1000 patients were tested. Twelve had positive results (1.2%), including one who had newly diagnosed HIV infection; 988 patients tested negative. Of these, 335 (33.3%) had never been tested; 640 had prior history of a negative HIV test. No false-positive rapid HIV results were detected; 98.7% received the results of their preliminary HIV test, including 100% of those who tested positive. Most subjects who declined testing cited either a recent negative HIV test (160/348) or low perceived risk (65/348). A minority cited a concern regarding their privacy (11/348) or that the test might delay their treatment (7/348).
Conclusions: The seroprevalence estimate of 1.2% was above the rate recommended by the CDC for routine universal opt-out testing in our study population. The acceptance rate of rapid HIV testing and the percentage of patients receiving results approximated other recent reports.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.