A Current Examination of HIV and Hepatitis C in Rural Counties

Research center:
Lead researcher:
Project funded:
September 2019
Project completed:
February 2021

Rural counties have witnessed significant growth in opioid pain reliever misuse and initiation of injection drug use. As a result, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevalence, acute hepatitis C virus (HCV) incidence, and maternal HCV infection have grown among certain rural subpopulations over the past decade. Establishing current, county-level HIV prevalence and acute HCV incidence estimates across the rural-urban continuum could inform policies and practices aimed at addressing the transmission and treatment of HIV and HCV in rural areas.

Using existing data from federal and state sources, we produced a chartbook on county-level data on HIV prevalence and acute HCV incidence, and examined the availability of Ryan White HIV/AIDS medical providers and other HIV and HCV treatment and testing services across the rural-urban continuum. We also estimated rural and urban county-level prevalence of maternal HCV infection for every county in the U.S.


  • Rural HIV Prevalence and Service Availability in the United States: A Chartbook
    Maine Rural Health Research Center
    Date: 02/2021
    This chartbook examines 2016 HIV prevalence and the availability of HIV prevention, testing, and treatment services across the rural-urban continuum and by U.S. census region.
  • Rural-Urban Residence and Maternal Hepatitis C Infection, U.S.: 2010-2018
    Journal Article
    Maine Rural Health Research Center
    Date: 02/2021
    This study uses data from the U.S. natality files to examine rural-urban differences in county-level rates of maternal infection with hepatitis C virus (HCV) during 2010-2018. Findings can help inform implementation of community-level interventions to reduce maternal HCV infection and narrow rural-urban disparities.