The COAG Health Council endorsed five new national strategies for blood borne viruses (BBV) and sexually transmissible infections (STI) in June 2014. The Strategies were drafted through an inclusive consultation process and will guide policies in relation to prevention, testing, treatment, management, care and support, workforce, an enabling environment, and surveillance research and monitoring in relation to BBV and STI. They were developed in partnership with community stakeholders, research organisations, medical professionals and state and territory health departments.
The National BBV & STI Strategies 2014-2017 require all Australian governments, clinicians, researchers, community and professional organisations and individuals to commit to setting the direction for a coordinated response to addressing the rising rates of BBVs and STIs.
The department is grateful to all contributors for their submissions.
The five strategies are:
To order hard copies of the new Strategies, please contact National Mail and Marketing.
National Blood-borne Viruses (BBV) and Sexually Transmissible Infections (STI) Surveillance and Monitoring Plan 2014-2017
The National BBV and STI Surveillance and Monitoring Plan 2014-17 (the Plan) informs and monitors progress on achieving the targets and reaching the goals of the National BBV and STI National Strategies 2014–2017. It is anticipated that reporting against the Plan will occur annually.
New Prevention Programme for Blood Borne Viruses and Sexually Transmissible Infections
The Australian Government is investing in a four-year, $22.45 million prevention programme to help address increasing rates of sexual transmissible infections (STIs) and blood borne viruses (BBVs) including HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C.
The programme targets priority populations including gay and bisexual men, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, culturally and linguistically diverse Australians, young people, people in rural and regional areas, and people who inject drugs.
The Government’s programme comprises the following initiatives:
- $7.2 million to reduce high rates of STIs among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander priority populations, particularly in regional and remote settings.
- $1 million for point of care demonstration testing projects to increase the HIV testing rate by offering tests which provide rapid results.
- $5.1 million for needle and syringe programmes, particularly in rural and regional areas.
- $4.6 million to increase uptake of testing and treatment for hepatitis B among priority populations.
The programme will also provide $4.5 million to support the 20th International AIDS Conference in Melbourne in July 2014, including the participation of priority populations at the conference and the development of the new national strategies for BBVs and STIs. This funding also supports the International Indigenous Pre-Conference on HIV & AIDS.