Nearly Half Of US Adults Living With HIV Received Federal Disability Benefits In 2009
Author: Ya-Lin A. Huang, Emma L. Frazier, Stephanie L. Sansom, Paul G. Farnham, Ram K. Shrestha, Angela B. Hutchinson, Jennifer L. Fagan, Abigail H. Viall, Jacek Skarbinski
The effects of HIV infection on national labor-force participation have not been rigorously evaluated. Using data from the Medical Monitoring Project and the National Health Interview Survey, we present nationally representative estimates of the receipt of disability benefits by adults living with HIV receiving care compared with the general US adult population. We found that in 2009, adults living with HIV were nine times more likely than adults in the general population to receive disability benefits. The risk of being on disability is also greater for younger and more educated adults living with HIV compared to the general population, which suggests that productivity losses can result from HIV infection. To prevent disability, early diagnosis and treatment of HIV are essential. This study offers a baseline against which to measure the impacts of recently proposed or enacted changes to Medicaid and private insurance markets, including the Affordable Care Act and proposed revisions to the Social Security Administration’s HIV Infection Listings.