How True Is Your Bedroom Talk?

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In last week’s blog, the Health Promotion & Treatments Officer discussed the PARTNER Study, where interim findings show zero sexual transmissions of HIV with 767 couples over a 2 year period. This is beginning to resurface a debate that has circulated the HIV sector for a few years: will Treatment as Prevention mean that people will stop using condoms as the best form of protection?  What we need to realise is... Read more

Un-detectable Un-transmissible Un-ambiguously…

Posted in Latest News and Treatments on

For many years it’s been know that effective HIV treatment reduces or lowers the risk of sexual transmission of HIV. By how much, is now more certain, poignantly in the absence of condom use. Previous landmark studies (namely HPTN052) measured the protective benefits of HIV treatment PLUS condom use combined, proving 96% reduction in HIV transmission risk predominantly among heterosexual sero-different couples. ... Read more

Major PBS Barrier to HIV Treatment Lifted

Posted in Advocacy and Latest News on

National Association of People with HIV Australia (NAPWHA) Media Release Tuesday 1 April 2014 Changes to Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) prescribing rules for HIV drugs, effective from today, will allow all Australians with HIV to start treatment as early as they choose. This follows a successful submission to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) by the Australasian Society for HIV Medicine... Read more

The International Political What? And what has that got to do with Melbourne?

Posted in Advocacy and Latest News on

We have an enormous and significant 2 years for our community and HIV sector with Melbourne holding the International World Aids Conference (IAC) in July this year, the pending launch of our National HIV strategy and 2015 being the deadline for the commitments stated in the 2011 United Nations Political Declaration on HIV/AIDS (the Declaration). Given that the eyes are on Australia with the IAC, I thought it would be a... Read more

QPP is chatting now on an app near you

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Looking for sex online is part of the norm now for a growing number of people.  Gay men in particular use apps like Grindr to chat to guys and quickly organise random hook ups – quick sex is never far away. These apps are part of the social media landscape and have become central to the lives of many gay men, so being available to chat with guys on these apps about their sexual health is essential to improving access... Read more

Information For People Ordering Online Generic HIV Treatments

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HIV generic drug online ordering companies can dispense and ship HIV medications to people who have no local HIV medication access through the Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) - which provides subsidised treatment to Medicare card holders only. Whilst generic HIV drugs ordered online are dearer than PBS subsidised drugs, they are a high cost saving compared to the full purchase cost of brand HIV drugs.... Read more

Starting Treatment at Low Versus High CD4 Counts

Posted in Latest News and Treatments on

Last month we blogged about the PBS lifting of the 500 CD4 cell count barrier to starting treatment, which is expected in April 2014. This month we review mounting evidence why it’s a good idea to start HIV treatment before the CD4 cell count falls to lower levels. A large cohort study published in the Clinical Infectious Diseases (CID) Journal online in January of this year, and reported here... Read more

Peer Support > A new philosophy for 2014

Posted in Info for Women, Latest News, Peer Support and Staff on

What an exciting year 2014 is shaping up to be in the world of Peer Support! I am adjusting my working hours to enable me to work the first Saturday of the month in alignment with the QPP BBQ. This has now occurred twice and it is already proving to be very successful. For people living with and affected by HIV that are unable to access our service due to other commitments such as work, this provides the opportunity for... Read more

(De)CRIMINALISING transmission: The preference of public health approaches

Posted in Advocacy and Latest News on

“In addition to HIV, a new virus had been detected that was sweeping the world. It was HIL. Highly ineffective laws” These were the words declared by Michael Kirby (who would be later appointed as an Australian High Court Justice) at a high level meeting in the mid 1980’s addressing HIV responses. Almost 30 years later the United National Global Commission on HIV and the Law concluded that any laws criminalising... Read more

HIV Prevention With Us, Not to Us

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In 1994, the principle of Greater Involvement of People with HIV/AIDS (GIPA) was created by the United Nations, and this was later amended to the Meaningful Involvement of People with HIV/AIDS (MIPA).  The purpose of this principle is to empower people living with HIV to have a greater say in the strategic direction and implementation of all things related to the HIV response.  Therefore, MIPA ensures there is a... Read more