Latin America: A thousand patients undergoing HIV treatment are added to Isapres every year
According to insurance companies, spending on treatments of various diseases has grown by 47% in two years. With greater access to treatment, HIV has gone from being a deadly disease to being managed as a chronic disease. Evidence of this increase could be interpreted from the latest figures collected by the Isapres Association for 2014-2016, which show that the number of patients insured by the private sector for HIV treatment is increasing by about 1,000 patients each year and reached 7,388 in 2016. This shows a growth of 19% each year, above the national increase in new cases of HIV, which, according to the latest UNAIDS report, is 10%. This report also placed Chile as the Latin American country where the new cases grew the most between 2010 and 2016, up 34%. Figures from private insurers show that between 2014 and 2016, the number of benefits granted for HIV treatment rose 64% (in 2016, 187,000 visits) and spending in the same period increased by 47%, surpassing USD39 billion last year. These changes will be enforceable once the correction to the latest AUGE decree, envisaged for 2018, comes into force and will guarantee therapy for all HIV patients. According to Isapres, the change will make spending on HIV treatment grow by 25% a year.
HIV is covered in the AUGE plan. Sexually transmitted diseases have become a concern for health authorities not only because of the increase in HIV cases, but also because of Hepatitis A outbreaks these days in MR, Valparaíso, Antofagasta and Temuco, or increased cases of other diseases, such as gonorrhea. The new anti-HIV campaign that the government will launch in August – includes other sexually transmitted diseases. It will emphasize the use of condoms as the main method of prevention of contagion and the importance of conducting diagnostic tests. The campaign targets different at-risk groups, such as men who have sex with men, indigenous peoples and immigrants. In parallel, the HIV treatment protocol was updated to standardize the treatments – to reduce the prescribed medications from more than 400 combinations to no more than 13. The drugs that are now included in the protocol are the safest and generate less resistance. These changes will be enforceable once the correction to the latest AUGE decree, envisaged for 2018, comes into force and will guarantee therapy for all HIV patients. According to Isapres, the change will make spending on HIV treatment grow by 25% a year.