Indiana county is experiencing nearly daily increases in new HIV infections tied to intravenous drug use, and health officials hope the situation prompts other states to closely track their hepatitis C and HIV rates to identify potential clusters of disease.
Indiana state health officials said Friday that the number of positive HIV tests has jumped to 142 in 2015 in Scott County, about 30 miles north of Louisville, Kentucky. That number includes 136 confirmed cases and 6 preliminary positives.
The county saw just three new HIV cases between 2009 and 2013 and has never seen more than five cases in a year, health officials said.
“We literally have new cases being reported every day,” said Dr. Jerome Adams, the state’s health commissioner.
Dr. Joan Duwve, chief medical consultant for the Indiana State Department of Health, said four out of five people infected in the outbreak have acknowledged using injectable drugs, mostly the painkiller Opana.
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