Report ranks eastern Kentucky counties at highest risk for HIV outbreaks

Published: Apr. 26, 2016 at 6:23 PM EDT
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A recently released Center for Disease Control and Prevention report has some alarming finds about the risk of HIV being spread through people who inject drugs.

After nearly 200 HIV cases were diagnosed in one southern Indiana community the CDC conducted a vulnerability assessment of counties most at risk of a rapid HIV spread through people who inject drugs.

Of the top 220 counties listed in the report, 54 of them are in Kentucky and more than half are located in the Appalachian regions of Kentucky, West Virginia and Tennessee. Wolfe County ranked number one. Breathitt, Perry and Clay counties were also in the top five.

The CDC based their rankings on the number of drug overdoses, unemployment and opioid sales among other factors.

The following is a list of Eastern Kentucky counties and their national rankings for vulnerability to the rapid spread of HIV and Hepatitis C among people who inject drugs.

Wolfe Co. - 1

Breathitt Co. - 3

Perry Co. - 4

Clay Co. - 5

Bell Co. - 6

Leslie Co. - 8

Knox Co. - 9

Floyd Co. - 10

Owsley Co. - 12

Whitley Co. - 14

Powell Co. - 15

Knott Co. - 17

Pike Co. - 21

Magoffin Co. - 23

Estill Co. - 25

Lee Co. - 30

Menifee Co. - 31

Martin Co. - 34

Lawrence Co. - 39

Rockcastle Co. - 40

Harlan Co. - 45

McCreary Co. - 48

Letcher Co. - 50

Johnson Co. - 53

Elliott Co. - 56

Laurel Co. - 65

(Source: Geospatial Research, Analysis, and Services Program (GRASP), Div. of Toxicology and Human Health Sciences, ATSDR (2015))