Social Theory & Health

, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 83–94

HIV: The invisible epidemic of the United States healthcare system

Original Article

DOI: 10.1057/sth.2009.18

Cite this article as:
Smith, R. & Aggarwala, B. Soc Theory Health (2010) 8: 83. doi:10.1057/sth.2009.18


We argue that the HIV epidemic in the United States is considerably more widespread than is officially reported. The occasional reports of outbreaks in cities like Washington DC, comparison with other countries in the developed world and our mathematical models, all point to the conclusion that the number of people living with HIV, but not AIDS, in the United States is more than four times larger than the current estimate. Although there are many reasons that HIV-positive individuals may not be aware of their serostatus, we argue that the United States healthcare system provides an additional pressure that simultaneously discriminates against and ignores the very people it should be targeting most.


HIV health care disparity mathematical model 

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mathematics and Faculty of MedicineThe University of OttawaOttawaCanada
  2. 2.Department of Mathematics and StatisticsThe University of CalgaryCalgaryCanada

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