People with HIV did not see as much of a decrease in COVID-19 mortality as HIV-negative people during the omicron wave. World Health Organization (WHO) researchers looked at the risk of death among 821,331 people hospitalized with COVID during different SARS-CoV-2 variant waves. Before the delta wave, 24% of HIV-positive people and 22% of HIV-negative people died. During the delta period, the mortality rates were 23% and 21%, respectively. But during the omicron period, mortality was twice as high for people with HIV: 20% versus 10%. During the pre-delta and delta periods, HIV-positive people had about a 55% greater risk of death, but during the omicron period, their mortality rate was 142% higher. “While COVID-19 mortality risk declined dramatically during omicron among HIV-negative people, it declined only modestly among people living with HIV, especially those with low CD4 counts,” said the WHO’s Meg Doherty, MD, PhD. The good news is that vaccinated people with HIV had about a 40% lower risk of death than those who were unvaccinated.
Researchers looked at the risk of death among 821,331 people hospitalized with COVID during different SARS-CoV-2 variant waves.