HIV associated neurocognitive disorder screening and diagnosis pathways in Australia: A scoping review and international implications


Symptomatic HIV-associated neurocognitive disorder (HAND) is a complication of HIV (cognitive impairment, difficulties with everyday functioning). If detected early, interventions assist with optimizing care, avoiding rapid decline and enhancing coping. There remains inconsistency surrounding screening/diagnosis information within Australian healthcare professionals and community settings. A scoping review of academic literature, government policies and non-government organisations (NGOs) was conducted to map existing screening/diagnosis information using the guidelines of Joanna Briggs Institute. A literature search of EBSCOhost and Medline (dates: 2015–2021), the Australian government NGO web domains, Google and unpublished academic works was conducted (July 2021) and updated (December 2022) to identify Australian items (past 5 years). Seventeen items met the inclusion criteria. No government guidelines were identified. Various HIV-related organisations proposed different diagnostic guidelines. Most HAND research originated in Sydney. The most accessible information was from Dementia Australia, with some inaccuracies noted. There is scant Australian research/information on HAND screening/diagnosis. HAND translational research and screening/diagnosis standards are urgently needed to inform best practices. The Australian context is used to discuss international implications regarding higher-income countries with similar patterns/healthcare.


Wagstaff RA, Mullens AB, Daken K, Cysique LA, Le Clercq D, Howard C, Gilling S, Piovesana A, Thompson CL




  • Population(s)
    • General HIV+ population
  • Testing
    • Testing
  • Mental Health
    • Neurocognitive disorders
  • Health Systems
    • Governance arrangements


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