HERTFORDSHIRE, England – 01 December 2018 -- Mylan N.V. (NASDAQ: MYL) has released data from its recent national consumer survey on human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) awareness. The data reveals that public misunderstanding of HIV still exists on a nationwide level, which has contributed to ongoing stigmatisation of the HIV community.
When the general public was asked if people living with HIV (PLHIV) would care about infecting others, just 60% thought they would. This dipped to 55% nationally amongst men and rose to 64% amongst women.
Other key findings revealed:
- Only 35% of respondents agreed that PLHIV should be allowed to have a baby
- 65% of respondents did not say they would feel comfortable with their child being in regular contact with a person living with HIV, for example, a teacher or classmate
The most recent estimate by Terrence Higgins Trust suggests there were 89,400 PLHIV in England in 2016. Of these, around 10,400 are undiagnosed so do not know they are HIV positive. 1 While new diagnoses have consistently dropped, correlating with increased awareness around preventative drugs such as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), the number of late diagnoses is still high, with 42% of new cases being caught later.2
Late diagnoses, and a lack of empathy amongst the public for PLHIV, correlates with figures from the survey that also show a vast gap in public knowledge about the transmission and treatment of HIV. Just 32% of respondents were able to identify HIV as a virus, and whilst 85% of respondents believed they knew how HIV is transmitted and less than half of respondents (44%) correctly knew that people living with undetectable levels of HIV could not transmit the virus to their partners.
Mylan is the exclusive supplier for the NHS’ PrEP Impact Study, which is being trialed amongst those who are at a high risk of HIV across England. PrEP (HIV Pre-exposure Prophylaxis) is a medicine for HIV negative people and is taken before sex to prevent HIV infection. It can reduce the risk of acquiring HIV when taken as instructed.
Mylan UK Country Manager, Jean-Yves Brault commented: “These statistics not only show worrying and varying levels of education around HIV, but also an indirect discrimination as a result. We hope these results foster conversations amongst peer groups in order to better support the HIV community and highlights the differing levels to which the wider public is educated about this manageable illness. With one of the industry’s largest and most diverse portfolios, Mylan are committed to meet the changing challenges when it comes to disease management and prevision and today, Mylan is proud to be involved with the NHS in the world’s largest PrEP trial to provide greater access to medication, to those most at risk of HIV.”
Dr. Laura Waters, Chair of the British HIV Associations Guidelines Committee: “Stigma against PLHIV is one of the reasons we have yet been unable to end the epidemic. These survey results, showing deep stigma persists despite availability of effective HIV treatment for almost a generation, highlight an urgent need for misconceptions to be challenged. We know that people on successful treatment, who have undetectable virus in their blood, have a normal life expectancy and cannot transmit HIV to their partners (undetectable=untransmittable or U=U). Stigma is a barrier to testing and to accessing care – ensuring the U=U message is understood by all is a priority”.
According to UNAIDS HIV continues to be a major global public health issue, with an estimated 77.3 million people becoming infected with HIV since it began. In 2017 an estimated 36.9 million people were living with HIV (including 1.8 million children) – with a global HIV prevalence of 0.8% among adults. Around 25% of these same people do not know that they have the virus. 3 This has led to a growing need for more campaigns that can raise awareness and educate the public, both of which are vital to stopping this epidemic from becoming more wide-spread.
The national survey was conducted with the research company Censuswide. It questioned 2000 respondents about their understanding of HIV transmission, their empathy for PLHIV and their understanding of management and treatment of HIV.
Mylan is a global pharmaceutical company committed to setting new standards in healthcare. Working together around the world to provide 7 billion people access to high quality medicine, we innovate to satisfy unmet needs; make reliability and service excellence a habit; do what’s right, not what’s easy; and impact the future through passionate global leadership. We offer a growing portfolio of more than 7,500 marketed products around the world, including antiretroviral therapies on which more than 40% of people being treated for HIV/AIDS globally depend. We market our products in more than 165 countries and territories. We are one of the world’s largest producers of active pharmaceutical ingredients. Every member of our approximately 35,000-strong workforce is dedicated to creating better health for a better world, one person at a time. Learn more at Mylan.com. We routinely post information that may be important to investors on our website at www.investor.mylan.com
Date of Publication: December 2018