Current HIV/AIDS Reports

, Volume 11, Issue 2, pp 158–167 | Cite as

Review of HIV in the Caribbean: Significant Progress and Outstanding Challenges

  • J. Peter Figueroa
The Global Epidemic (S Vermund, Section Editor)


This paper reviews the recent literature on HIV in the Caribbean and discusses the challenges faced. HIV incidence in the Caribbean has declined by 49 % in the past decade, coverage of persons living with HIV among those eligible for antiretroviral treatment as per national guidelines was 70 % in 2012, and some countries are meeting the target of virtual elimination of mother-to-child transmission. HIV prevalence in the Caribbean is 1 % with features of both a generalized and concentrated HIV epidemic. HIV prevalence among female sex workers has declined but remains unacceptably high among men who have sex with men. Social and cultural factors, gender norms, and strong stigma associated with HIV and homosexuality contribute to the continued spread of HIV. Caribbean countries and their partners have invested significant resources, creative effort and impressive research in strengthening the HIV response nationally and regionally. However, in order to control the HIV epidemic, leaders at all levels, and the people, must address fundamental structural barriers in society that deny marginalized persons their rights, undermine public health goals, and impede universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, and care.


HIV AIDS HIV/AIDS STI Caribbean Sex worker MSM Adolescent Youth Sexual behavior Risk behavior Risk factor Drug user Prison HIV stigma Social factors Gender Social vulnerability Violence Research Barbados Dominican Republic Guyana Haiti Jamaica Global epidemic 


Compliance with Ethics Guidelines

Conflict of Interest

J. Peter Figueroa declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Community Health and PsychiatryUniversity of the West IndiesKingston 7Jamaica

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