According to a new Washington, D.C. government report, no children have been born with the HIV virus in D.C. since 2009. Despite more than 2.7 percent of the District of Columbia's 600,000 residents living with HIV, the government is claiming success in eliminating HIV births, which are down from a high of more than three per month. Dr. Marta Gwen of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention is calling the statistic an "awesome" achievement. Mother-to-child HIV transmissions can occur anytime during pregnancy, labor, delivery, or breastfeeding. Between 1988 and 1990, when AIDS cases were at their highest levels, Dr. Gwen and her team discovered that, of those tested, 121 mothers and an estimated 36 newborn babies were HIV-positive.
With the CDC and others in the health profession eradicating mother-to-child HIV transmissions, methods of keeping viral loads low such as using antiretroviral medication are instrumental in making transmitting HIV to their infants highly unlikely.