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50 plus research

Older man with scarf

Older people are the fastest growing group in the UK with HIV. Their numbers will double over the next five years. Treatment advances are now keeping people alive into old age – but what quality of life can they look forward to, and how can it be improved?

That’s why Terrence Higgins Trust and Age UK, approached The Joseph Rowntree Foundation in 2009 to fund the first national research into the concerns and needs of older people with HIV as they face longer life. And now it’s here for you to read and use.

50 Plus surveyed 410 people with HIV aged 50 and over, and then interviewed 40 of them in depth. This was done through MBARC, a research company who trained and involved peer community researchers and guided by a Community Advisory Panel including older people with HIV, researchers and clinicians.

50 Plus shows that older people with HIV are disadvantaged in a wide range of ways – from poorer health, to social care and housing problems and significant financial disadvantage compared to their peers. 

The research also describes hopes and fears for the future, including major concerns about health and social care and money. This merits attention from HIV organisations, age-related organisations and health and social care professionals. THT and Age UK will be using it to inform our own services in the future, but also to get mainstream organisations prepared to support people with HIV alongside other older people within the wider community.

Feel free to use the data from the survey – we think it belongs to all the people who contributed or who are facing older age with HIV – but please credit us so that other people find out about it and use it too, for planning and service development, or just for discussion.

If you're over 50 and looking for support, take a look at Health, Wealth & Happiness, our resource for HIV positive people over 50 ››


 50 plus full findings 50 plus summary findings
The full findings 

The summary findings

50 plus guide


The Literature Review from which the research questionnaire was constructed.

50 plus guide: help and information for people who have HIV and are 50 or over. 




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