U.S. hospital admissions for HIV-related care fell 53% to 70,000 in 2003 from 149,000 in 1995, while mortality among hospitalized AIDS patients declined 32% to a rate of 8.5% from 12.5% over the same period, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality said. Officials credited the improvements to powerful new combinations of drugs. Women made up roughly 34% of HIV hospitalizations in 2003, up from 26% in 1995. Medicaid remained the largest payer for HIV-related stays, but its share declined to 49% from 53%. Private insurers' share dropped, too, to 17% from 22%. The percent of HIV-related stays covered by Medicare rose to 17% from 11%, and the percent of uninsured patients increased to 11% from 8%. -- by Melanie Evans
HIV-related hospital admissions drop with new drugs
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