Study: Estimate on H.I.V. infection is 40 percent higher than previously believed.

A new study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that “the United States has significantly underreported the number of new H.I.V. infections occurring nationally each year.” According to the study, “the annual infection rate is 40 percent higher than previously estimated.” The CDC knew the numbers in October, but waited for them to be released in a peer-reviewed journal:

The C.D.C. has known of the new figures since last October when the authors completed a manuscript and sent it to the first of three journals. But the agency refused to release the findings until they were published in a peer reviewed medical journal. The first two journals rejected the authors’ request for a fast-track review.

The paper is being published in the Aug. 6 issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association. The journal and the disease centers had planned to release it at a news conference on Sunday at the opening of the 17th International AIDS Conference here. But the paper was released on Saturday because the embargo was broken. A number of leading health experts have criticized the agency for not releasing the information earlier. Last Nov. 21, C.D.C officials told AIDS advocacy groups and reporters that the data would be released soon.