HIV Ireland
NewsDesk Weekly
13 April 2017



HPSC - Weekly HIV & STIs Report - Week 13, 2017 (end Q1)
Latest data from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre show a total of 13 new cases for week 13 - 2017, bringing the total to 137 HIV new notifications for 2017 to date.

HIV in Ireland, 2016: Provisional Data (slide set) 
HPSC, 30 March 2017

Scotland first in UK to approve anti-HIV drug
HIV Scotland, 10 April 2017
The Scottish Medicines Consortium has announced that PrEP has been deemed a cost-effective treatment to prevent the transmission of HIV and will be made available on the NHS in Scotland.

Scotland Will Provide The Drug That Prevents HIV To Those At Risk
BuzzFeed, 10 April 2017
PrEP4Scotland, a group of organisations comprising HIV Scotland, Terrence Higgins Trust Scotland, Waverley Care, and the National AIDS Trust, which have been working towards the provision of PrEP in Scotland, welcomed the news in a joint statement.
Lillie’s Bordello Donates €835 To HIV Ireland
The Outmost, 31 March 2017
Alan Amsby (aka Mr Pussy) presented HIV Ireland with the €835 donation from Lillie’s Bordello.

HIV Expert Group publish Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) Review findings
Public Health Wales, 21 March 2017
The independent HIV Expert Group established by Public Health Wales has completed its review of the available evidence of the effectiveness of PrEP in HIV prevention among high risk individuals.
You can read the report here: ‘Preparing for PrEP?’ A Review of the Current Evidence for Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) to prevent HIV infection in Wales

Welsh report says HIV prevention drug 'highly effective'
BBC, 22 March 2017
PrEP is not currently available on the Welsh NHS, but a report by an independent HIV expert group said it was "highly effective" when used with the right groups and in the right doses with appropriate monitoring.

Not just PrEP: other reasons for London's HIV decline
The Lancet, April 2017
Dean Street Clinic experts believe that the causes of the 42% decline in new cases seen at their clinic are likely to be multifactorial, including STIs screen and increase in HIV testing.
See also:
The large fall in HIV diagnoses in London gay men is real and thanks to combination prevention, not just PrEP
Aidsmap, 6 April 2017

GMHS Needs More Funding or HIV Rates Will Never Fall
The Outmost, 5 April 2017
A new report indicates that London’s drop in HIV diagnoses is likely due to a combination of factors, including PrEP, PEP and faster treatment of STIs like chlamydia and gonorrhoea. Editor Aidan Quigley says Ireland should follow suit and increase funding for sexual health clinics like GMHS.

Adam Houlihan talks about PrEP in Ireland
Masc., 20 March 2017
PrEP is currently unavailable in Ireland and prevention advocates are campaigning for the implementation of this drug. Adam Houlihan talks about his decision of going on PrEP and the difficulties of finding this medication in Ireland.

Trialling PrEP: What happened to the NHS PrEP trial?
Boyz, 22 March 2017
When NHS England announced at the start of December 2016 that they’d be funding a new large-scale PrEP trial, many people thought that they’d be able to access PrEP in the spring. Dr Will Nutland from gives an update about what’s going on with the trial.

Suicides in men with HIV are twice the rate of general population
The Gay UK, 10 April 2017
The data presented at the recent BHIVA conference come from a fifteen-year study of almost 90,000 people diagnosed with HIV in England and Wales, with comparison against the general population.

New HIV cases fall to 13-year low in Scotland
The Herald Scotland, 21 March 2017
Latest statistics from Health Protection Scotland  show that new diagnoses of HIV in Scotland have fallen to their lowest level in more than a decade.

HIV testing should be seen as routine practice, says NICE in new draft quality standard
Wired Gov, 27 March 2017
The new draft quality standard by NICE suggests practical steps to increase the uptake of HIV testing, such as offering HIV tests during routine appointments.
Read the HIV testing draft quality standard

Straight With HIV: An Interview With Joshua Middleton
The Body, 17 March 2017
Joshua Middleton was 22 when he was diagnosed with HIV on June 5, 2012, As a non-injection drug user, non-promiscuous heterosexual, contracting HIV was the least of his worries.

Half of new Norwegian HIV-patients are heterosexual
Science Nordic, 28 March 2017
Half of Norwegian heterosexual men who become infected have had casual sex in Thailand. Women are most likely to become infected by their regular partner.

How Do You Do It? Australian HIV Campaign Puts Emphasis on a Combination of Ways
UNAIDS, April 2017
A new Australian campaign is focusing on HIV prevention based on a combination of various prevention tools including condoms, PrEP, and TasP.

India to ban discrimination against people with HIV/AIDS
CNN, 12 April 2017
The HIV and AIDS Prevention and Control Bill, passed by the country's parliament, will make it illegal to discriminate against people living with HIV.

Canada’s top HIV researchers urge federal, provincial and territorial governments to act now to limit the use of the criminal law in HIV non-disclosure cases
CfE Net, 6 April 2017
Canadian experts have released a statement expressing concern about the ongoing use of the criminal law in HIV non-disclosure cases, irrespective of the possibility of transmission or whether transmission actually occurred.

What I've Learned from 30 Years of AIDS Activism
VICE, 30 March 2017
Activist Peter Staley explains what lessons can be drawn from his time fighting AIDS today.

See the 1980s Posters That Helped Raise Awareness About AIDS
Time, 29 November 2016
The University of Rochester's Rare Books and Special Collections department houses a collection of more than 8,000 AIDS education posters.
AIDS Education Posters
University of Rochester

Three Reasons Why Language is Important in Media Coverage of HIV
HRC Blog, 27 March 2017
Media can play an important role in helping to remove discrimination attached to people living with HIV by using a destigmatizing language and giving correct information.

Numerous Steps Required for At-Risk Gays to Get on PrEP Limit Its Impact
Poz, 21 March 2017
A study of gay and bi men in late 2015 found that two thirds were PrEP candidates but less than 1 in 10 of those men were taking it.

Antenatal screening in Europe: How to avoid mother-to-child transmission of infections
Eureka Alert, 21 March 2017
Transmission of infections with HIV, hepatitis B, syphilis or rubella from mother to child before and during birth as well as in infancy is still widespread across Europe. A new ECDC report outlines how to improve the uptake of antenatal testing among vulnerable groups like migrant women or women at higher risk for infections
Full report: Antenatal screening for HIV, hepatitis B, syphilis and rubella susceptibility in the EU/EEA – addressing the vulnerable populations
ECDC, March 2017

British Mothers With HIV Are Going Hungry To Pay For Formula Milk
Buzzfeed, 3 April 2017
Breastfeeding risks infecting the baby and, according to a new report, mothers living in poverty are sacrificing their health to avoid it.

PrEP should be given to all breastfed babies, researchers say
Aidsmp, 5 April 2017
An international group of researchers say that PrEP should be given to all breastfed babies of HIV-positive mothers in countries where the likelihood of transmission via breastfeeding remains significant.

Should Antiretroviral Therapy Be Offered The Same Day As Diagnosis?
ITPC, 22 March 2017
Discussion on WHO’s proposed recommendation for starting treatment the same day of diagnosis (Same Day Start).

Q&A: The director of the Gates Foundation's HIV program on what's needed to accelerate efforts
Devex, 15 February 2017
Interview to Emilio Emini, director of the HIV program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

WHO: Co-infection of Tuberculosis and HIV in Europe Increases
Prensa Latina, 21 March 2017
A new report by the World Health Organization indicates that tuberculosis and HIV co-infection has increased in Europe by 40 percent.

Finding men with HIV – and keeping them in treatment
Aidsmap, 17 March 2017
HIV testing and retain in care strategies in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Two-thirds of people with HIV/HCV co-infection in Southeast Asia in need of HCV therapy
Aidsmap, 24 March 2017
This is the first regional study of comprehensive assessment of HCV infection and HCV-related liver disease in HIV-HCV-coinfected patients in Asia. The proportion of patients in this cohort having liver disease is concerning, as routine HCV treatment is usually not available or accessible for patients under HIV care in South-East Asia.”

100 HIV/AIDS organizations sign letter urging Congress to oppose American Health Care Act
Healio, 22 March 2017
One hundred HIV/AIDS organisations have signed a letter to Congress strongly urging members to oppose passing the American Health Care Act because millions of Americans would likely lose health insurance coverage, including thousands of patients with HIV.

Behaviour change interventions in HIV prevention: is there still a place for them?
Aidsmap, 12 April 2017
A meta-analysis of studies on how to reduce HIV risk behaviour in HIV-negative gay men has found that brief interventions techniques can have a significant impact especially if face-to-face, and immediately after HIV testing.

Long-acting injectable PrEP study now enrolling
Beta Blog, 20 March 2017
Research sites across various countries are now enrolling MSM and transgender women who have sex with men into an injectable PrEP study. This study will evaluate the safety and efficacy of this new long-acting injectable version, compared with Truvada.

Are serious heart problems inevitable for people with HIV? A conversation with cardiologist Priscilla Hsue
Beta Blog, 15 March 2017
Cardiologist Dr Priscilla Hsue talks about heart health and inflammation, and why cardiovascular conditions are becoming a growing concern for people growing older with HIV.

The Story Behind the First AIDS Drug
Time, 19 March 2017
Story of the AZT drug and the controversies surrounding its trial and FDA approval.

HIV drives evolution of tuberculosis bacterium
Cosmos, 22 March 2017
The bacterium responsible for tuberculosis is evolving in response to HIV infection, with potentially serious implications for vaccine design.
HIV 'fingerprint' tool could greatly assist vaccine development
Medical News Today, 29 March 2017
Scientists hope that their new method of "fingerprinting" the shields of sugar molecules that HIV surrounds itself with to evade the immune system will improve and speed up the development of effective vaccines.


A third of MSM with HIV/HCV co-infection have HCV in their semen
Aidsmap, 11 April 2017
Researchers have found that levels of HCV in semen of co-infected HIV-positive MSM were high enough to transmit the infection. The authors believe that condoms should be used for anal sex to prevent HCV transmission.
See also:
London data shows that hepatitis C is passed on during anal sex without a condom
Aidsmap, 10 April 2017
Several studies have identified receptive anal sex without condoms as a risk factor for HepC transmission. Researchers have demonstrated that hepatitis C virus can be found at infectious levels both in semen and the rectal mucosa challenging the belief that hepatitis C can only be transmitted in blood.

Call for outreach programmes for people with hepatitis C
RTE, 7 April 2017
The Health Service Executive has provided €30m to fund treatment for hepatitis C, however there is a call for additional funding for more community outreach programmes to raise awareness among vulnerable people who could be unknowingly infected.

Researchers develop new method to 'fingerprint' HIV
Medical Xpress, 28 March 2017
Scientists have found a method to analyse the glycan shield that HIV uses to enter host cells and block the immune system from seeing their targets and developing antibodies.

Portugal dealing with sharp surge of Hepatitis A cases
The Portugal News, 30 March 2017
Portugal’s national health board has warned of a sharp rise in the number of cases of Hepatitis A among MSM. The warning comes after more than 100 new cases were registered since the start of this year,.


Insurance costs bleed needle exchange programmes in Tallaght of cash
Echo, 13 March 2017
Needle exchange programmes in Tallaght have been faced with “astronomical” insurance hikes of more than 300 per cent in recent years, with one local service unable to get insured by any company in Ireland.

Concern over street use of epilepsy drug in Dublin and Limerick
The Journal, 30 March 2017
Ana Liffey Drug Project has launched an awareness campaign on Pregabalin, taken by drugs users in combination with other substances.
See also:
Pregabalin harm reduction campaign launched on, March 2017

USI: Drug information campaign 2017, 20 March 2017
Second phase of a student drug campaign focuses on synthetic cannabinoids and mephedrone.

New research: Reducing stigma from HIV and drug use saves lives
Beta Blog, 28 March 2017
HIV stigma and shame over injection drug use can prevent people from accessing vital health and social services including proper HIV care.

Harm reduction should address the specific needs of couples who inject drugs
Aidsmap, 21 March 2017
Australian research: The sharing of drug injecting equipment most often occurs between sexual partners, but the ways in which couples manage risks and care for each other have been largely ignored by harm reduction services.


Concern over 50% jump in gonorrhoea cases
The Irish Times, 5 April 2017
Younger people are the most affected as number of sexually transmitted infections rises by 10%.

Sexual Health

UN tells Ireland to introduce compulsory objective sex education
Teach Don’t Preach, 3 April 2017
A United Nations Committee has recommended that Ireland should integrate objective compulsory sex education into the school curriculum, and should closely monitor and evaluate its delivery by schools.

Cork Sexual Health Centre: Young people today have a healthy open attitude to sex
Irish Examiner, 8 April 2017
Deirdre Seery, CEO at the Cork Sexual Health Centre, talks about the history of the Centre and about young people issues around sex.


Get Fit for Pride with Dublin Front Runners’ Couch to 5k
The Outmost, 29 March 2017
The Couch To 5K program includes a five kilometre Pride Run on June 16 with proceeds from the charity run going to LGBT community resources HIV Ireland, Outhouse and ShoutOut.

Trans People and HIV
NAT, April 2017
How can policy work improve HIV prevention, treatment and care for trans people in the UK?
See also:
International Transgender Day of Visibility: Trans People Overlooked and Misidentified in Health Data
NAT, 31 March 2017

Sex Work

Ireland makes paying for sex illegal
Politico, 27 March 2017
Following the Nordic model, the Irish Government has approved a new law which makes it illegal to purchase sex.

The Sexual Offences Act – The Sex Worker’s Perspective
University Observer, 30 March 2017
Debate on the Nordic model.
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Dublin Pride Run 2017

The annual Dublin Pride Run takes place on Friday 16th June 2017 in the Phoenix Park.  This year funds are being raised to support the work of HIV Ireland, Outhouse and ShoutOut.  Registration is now open at




Free HIV testing
clinic at HIV Ireland

The next HIV and STI testing clinic at HIV Ireland takes place on Wednesday 26th April 2017.  This is a free, walk-in service.  For more details and further testing dates see


Free Rapid HIV testing @ GMHS

Free rapid HIV testing now available at a new Monday clinic at the Gay Men’s Health Service, Baggot Street Hospital, Dublin 4.  Clinic times: 2pm to 4pm.  Drop-in service.  Full STI screening also included.

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


National HIV and AIDS Archives

Launched for our 30th anniversary, you can follow the publication of our 1987 newspaper and print media archives at
Chlamydia booklet

HIV Ireland recently published a new information booklet about Chlamydia.  The publication is supported by the Union of Students in Ireland, and the HSE Sexual Health and Crisis Pregnancy Programme.  The booklet can be viewed at

Gettin’ It On

HIV Ireland has re-published this popular guide to using condoms correctly.  Complete with a fresh new design, Gettin’ It On can be viewed at

Join the Just Carry One campaign and promote safer sex at

A harm reduction information campaign about Snow Blow and HIV.  More information at

Had Unprotected Sex?

A handy web-enabled infographic highlighting the dual risk of contracting STIs and/or experiencing an unplanned pregnancy and signposting to key services and information.  View the infographic at’

The joint Gay Health Network and HSE campaign promoting HIV prevention and sexual health awareness for men who have sex with men in Ireland.  Learn more at


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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