HIV in Ireland

The Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) is responsible for the collation and analysis of data on HIV and AIDS in Ireland.  The data below is taken from the 2016 Report on HIV in Ireland – the most recent report issued by the HPSC (3rd October 2017).  This and other reports can be accessed at

8,341 people have been diagnosed with HIV in Ireland since the early 1980’s.


Summary Report 2016

  • 508 people were newly diagnosed with HIV in Ireland in 2016.
  • This is a rate of 10.7 per 100,000 population.
  • 393 were male (77%), 115 were female (23%).


Age Groups:

  • 18% of new HIV diagnosis was reported among those aged 29 years and younger.
  • 43% of new HIV diagnosis was reported among 30 to 39 year olds.
  • 22% of new HIV diagnosis was reported among 40 to 49 year olds.
  • 9% of new HIV diagnosis was reported among those aged 50 years and older.
  • The median age of adult cases at HIV diagnosis was 35 years.


Probable Route of Transmission:

Information on the probable route of transmission was available for 84% of diagnoses in 2016.

  • Sex between men was the predominant route of HIV transmission in Ireland in 2016 and accounted for just over half of diagnoses (51%).
  • Heterosexual contact was the second most commonly reported mode of transmission in 2016 (140; 28%).
  • The majority of heterosexual cases were born in countries with generalised HIV epidemics.
  • 4% of new diagnoses (n=21) were among people who inject drugs.
  • There were three (3) mother to child transmission cases notified in 2016.  Two had been previously diagnosed abroad and one was born in Ireland.



Previously Tested Positive Abroad Including Transfer of Care

  • Among the diagnoses in 2016, 34% (n=175) were previously diagnosed with HIV in another country.
  • Since 2015 data has been collected on whether a person has transferred their HIV care from another country. 30% (n=151) diagnosed in 2016 were transferring their care.

Late Presentation and Advanced HIV Infection


Late diagnosis: CD4 count of less than <350 cells/mm3 or an AIDS defining illness at diagnosis.

Advanced HIV infection: CD4 count of less than <200 cells/mm3 or an AIDS defining illness at diagnosis.

  • Information on stage of HIV infection at diagnoses was available for 63% of cases.
  • Among those not previously diagnosed abroad 44% were late presenters and 24% presented with advanced HIV infection.
  • The groups with the highest proportions of both presenting late and with advanced HIV infections were females, heterosexuals, people over 40 and people born in sub-Saharan Africa.


Region of Birth:

  • Of the diagnoses in 2016, 25% (n=129) were born in Ireland, 61% (n=311) were born abroad and 13% (n=68) did not have information on country of birth.
  • Of the 311 cases among migrants, 36% (n=113) were born in sub-Saharan Africa and 33% (n=103) were born in Latin America.
  • Over half (53%) of female cases were born in sub-Saharan Africa.



  • Among the HIV diagnoses in 2016, 2 people were reported to have died at the time of HIV notification (one male and one female).
  • There were 8 deaths reported to the CSO in 2016 where the cause of death was AIDS or HIV (4 males and 4 females).




Global Statistics: HIV

UNAIDS ( publishes epidemiological reports on HIV.  The latest fact sheet was issued on World AIDS Day 2017.