HIV Ireland
NewsDesk Weekly
5 February 2016



HPSC - Weekly HIV & STI Report - Weeks 4, 2016
Latest data from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre show 5 new cases for week 4-2016, bringing the total to 36 HIV new notifications for 2016 to date.

People Are So Desperate For The Drug That Blocks HIV They’re “Cheating” The NHS
Buzzfeed, 3 February 2016
In a practice known as “clinic hopping”, individuals across Britain are attending a series of different sexual health clinics as well as A&E departments and claiming they have already had risky sex in order to be prescribed Truvada.

London sexual health clinics step up their support for people buying PrEP online
Aidsmap, 29 January 2016
Several sexual health clinics in London and Brighton will offer free safety monitoring and support to people who have bought affordable PrEP generic medications online.

We Aren’t the Sex Police: What PrEP Providers Say About Condoms & STIs
Beta Blog, 29 January 2016
How do PrEP providers, who see clients every three months for sexual health screenings, talk to their clients about condom use, STIs and protected, or safer, sex?

How to Talk to Your Partner About Going on PrEP
HIV Plus, 29 January 2016
Having the PrEP talk with your partner can open up a can of worms. Here's how to make the conversation as smooth as possible.

Resistance to key HIV drug 'concerningly common'
Eureka Alert, 28 January 2016
According to a study led by University College London, HIV drug resistance to Tenofovir, an antiretroviral drug vital to HIV treatment and prevention strategies, is surprisingly and worryingly common.
See also:
Drug Resistance To Popular HIV Treatment Could Spell Trouble
Huffington Post, 29 January 2016
The availability of second-line drugs is increasing, but they are more expensive and have more side effects associated with them.

Chemsex is here to stay
FS Mag, 2 February 2016
Opinion piece: Mario Forgione, freelance writer living with HIV, talks about the reality of chemsex and gay scene.

What Do You Do if You're HIV-Positive and Terrified of Rejection?
Advocate, 2 February 2016
“How do I get over the mental aspect of living with HIV? It's been about a year but I still have a hard time dating. I'm so scared to talk about what I have that I end up just not following through with meeting people. I've faced some rejection, and it's one of my biggest fears.”

“We are not a threat to you”: A video diary of people living with HIV
Salon, 5 February 2016
Salon interviewed nine people from all walks of life who are living with or affected by HIV. For all of them, the act of speaking out about their status was a necessary step in living an authentic life with HIV.

HIV-positive man awarded damages for unfair dismissal
The Local, 4 February 2016
In a potentially landmark case Innsbruck’s regional court has ordered that the state of Tyrol pay a man €35,000 in damages after it ruled that he was dismissed from a new job during a trial period because he is gay and HIV-positive.

HIV-positive man mistakenly denied tourist visa to Australia
Star Observer, 2 February 2016
A HIV-positive man who was wrongly denied a tourist visa to Australia has condemned the country's immigration laws. The man said whether or not it was an administrative error, the experience dredged up a lot of the stigma he has experienced over the years a person living with HIV.

Prison needle programs touted to reduce HIV and Hep C
The Star, 3 February 2016
After years pushing for safe drug-injection programs in Canadian jails, health advocates say mounting evidence and a new government in Ottawa present a chance to finally make it happen.

HIV Criminalization Laws Disproportionately Punish People of Color
Beta Blog, 5 February 2016
This article explores the controversy surrounding HIV criminalization laws. The stigma and medically-inaccurate fear that HIV criminalization laws propagate have negative consequences for all people with HIV, and black people may be even more affected.
See also:
CDC: Blacks with HIV less likely to receive consistent medical care
AJC, 4 February 2016

Charity welcomes legalisation of self-test kits for HIV
The Belfast Telegraph, 29 January 2016
The purchasing of self-testing HIV kits in Northern Ireland is now legal.

Opt-out approach can boost HIV testing rates
Aidsmap, 5 February 2016
A large randomised study in an emergency department in San Francisco clearly shows that an ‘opt-out’ approach to seeking consent for HIV testing can increase the number of people who take the test.

Study shows direct link between state spending habits and AIDS deaths
Eureka Alert, 5 February 2016
A study by researchers at the Yale Global Health Leadership Institute found that states with higher spending on social services and public health had significantly lower HIV/AIDS case rates and fewer AIDS deaths.

Broad range of risk factors associated with mild cognitive impairment in HIV-positive men on ART
Aidsmap, 3 February 2016
A new study carried out in Holland examines the issue of mild cognitive impairment in people living with HIV and the various combinations of factors which appears to raise this impairment in older HIV positive people.

Cistus extracts attack HIV and Ebola viruses
News medical, 2 February 2016
Scientists have discovered that extracts of the medicinal plant Cistus Incanus, commonly known as rockrose, prevent human immunodeficiency viruses from infecting cells. Active antiviral ingredients in the extracts inhibit docking of viral proteins to cells.

Research in the news: Even moderate alcohol intake may harm people with HIV
Yale News, 2 February 2016
A study carried out by researchers at Yale University shows that moderate alcohol consumption is more harmful to people with HIV than uninfected individuals, raising the risk of both mortality and other negative health effects. This study is the first to demonstrate the increased harm also among patients who have suppressed HIV with antiretroviral treatment.

Obesity and weight gain in HIV-infected adults on antiretroviral therapy: What's the harm?
Eureka Alert, 4 February 2016
This study examines weight gain and BMI among people living with HIV on antiretroviral treatment.

Bladder cancer occurring earlier in people with HIV, and cases more difficult to treat, French study finds
Aidsmap, 5 February 2016
The frequency of bladder cancer is elevated in male patients with HIV and occurs at a younger age than would be expected in the general population. 

Study identifies mechanism for drug target to help block HIV's ability to spread
Medical Xpress, 2 February 2016
University of Minnesota researchers have identified the mechanism of a potential HIV drug target, which could be a more cost-effective option than currently used HIV drugs.

Innate lymphoid cells get destroyed in patients infected with HIV
News Medical, 4 February 2016
A research project carried out at the University of Copenhagen highlights the importance of early treatment. The study shows that the ILCs (a component of the immune system crucial to maintaining immune system balance) - are destroyed by the HIV virus. If treatment is initiated during the later chronic infection stage the ILCs are eradicated.



Online ‘pop quiz’ may help predict STIs in young women
Irish Medical Times, 3 February 2016
Researchers at Johns Hopkins say an online ‘pop quiz’ they developed in 2009 shows promising accuracy in predicting STIs. The results, however, seems to be accurate in young women, not young men. You can check the quiz here.



Study: LGBT inmates in Irish prisons bullied and harassed
Irish Examiner, 2 February 2016
A ground-breaking study has found evidence of “harassment and bullying” of LGBT inmates in Irish prisons. The abuse, including threats of physical violence, has placed some of these inmates at risk of self-harm and suicide.
See also:
Out on the Inside - The Rights, Experiences and Needs of LGBT People in Prison
IPRT, 2 February 2016
This report is the first in-depth study on the experiences of LGBT people in prison in Ireland, and includes first-hand testimony of LGBT inmates, alongside a wider review of the prison and policy context.


Sex Work

New laws in Germany will make clients of sex-workers wear condoms
The Journal, 2 February 2016
The new rule, which may come into force next year, is part of a package of measures addressing sex work issues.

Examining the Implications of PrEP as HIV Prevention for Sex Workers
IDS, January 2016
PrEP could provide protection where condoms are not used. Integrating it into sexual health programmies for various communities has become a focus of researchers and health and development agencies. However, PrEP raises important challenges in the context of female sex work.


Other Articles

The UN has called Ireland out on religious schools’ ‘discriminatory admissions policies’
The Journal, 4 February 2016
Several human rights and children’s groups have come out demanding political action to address a number of issues highlighted in the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child’s (UNCRC) report on Ireland.
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Diceman 20th Anniversary Posters

Thom McGinty – The Diceman and HIV Activist - 20th Anniversary Commemorative Limited Edition Posters for sale at HIV Ireland.  All proceeds go to HIV Ireland.  Email for details.

Free HIV testing
clinic at HIV Ireland

The next HIV and STI testing clinic at HIV Ireland takes place on Wednesday 10th February.  This is a free, walk-in service.  For more details and further testing dates see

GMHS Outreach Clinic
The Gay Men’s Health Service outreach testing clinic takes place in Outhouse LGBT Community Centre on the third Saturday of every month.  The next clinic date is Saturday 20th February. Doors open 1:30pm.

GUIDE Clinic

Free HIV and STI testing at the GUIDE Clinic, St. James’s Hospital every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.  See more at

Online Testing Locator Map
Find your nearest HIV and STI testing clinic with this handy locator map at  All testing services at these clinics are free of charge.


Free Condoms @ HIV Ireland
HIV Ireland offers a free condoms service.  Drop into our offices during opening hours for your free condoms, and follow our social media STIs prevention campaign at


Let’s Talk About…Safer Sex
Our next four-day training for trainers programme commences on Tuesday 23rd February.  Details at


Join the Just Carry One campaign and promote safer sex at

HIV: Laid Bare

The new HIV prevention and awareness campaign by the Gay Health Network partnership as part of the programme.  #GetTheBareFacts at



HIV and sexual health information for men who have sex with men.

HIV and Sexual Health Helpline

Freephone or email the HIV and sexual health helpline for confidential support and information.
Gay Switchboard Ireland
Gay Switchboard Ireland volunteers are trained to take your calls on HIV and sexual health.  Lines open 7 days a week.  See more at
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