The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) has detected an increase in newly diagnosed HIV infections among persons who inject drugs (PWID) in multiple areas across the Commonwealth. Recent HIV transmission is evidenced by several new cases diagnosed during the acute stage of HIV infection. The primary risk factor reported among identified cases is injection drug use (IDU). Injectable substances linked to this outbreak include heroin, fentanyl, and methamphetamine.
MDPH is asking healthcare providers to enhance their vigilance for, increase their testing of, and to rapidly report new HIV infections in PWID to DPH. Prompt identification of cases and linkage to care improves clinical outcomes and is critical to reducing HIV transmission.