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ASHM Newsletter - June 2015
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Peak national health and community organisations congratulate the Australian Government’s release of new National BBV and STI Strategies
Peak HIV, viral hepatitis, sexual health and community organisations today welcomed the release of five new National Blood Borne Virus (BBV) and Sexually Transmissible Infections (STI) Strategies by the Australian government. The peak organisations were consulted heavily in the development of the strategies, ensuring they provide a strong platform for a high quality and coordinated national response to BBVs and STIs over the coming five years. The release, ahead of World AIDS Day, was accompanied by the announcement from Health Minister Greg Hunt of $5 million in funding to support the implementation of the strategies at a national level.  Read more
 
World AIDS Day: Responding to the HIV epidemic both in Australia and throughout the Asia and Pacific regions

On this World AIDS Day, ASHM CEO, Alexis Apostolellis, spoke of taking the opportunity to harness our position within the region as committed leaders in the response to the HIV epidemic. "While the history of HIV and AIDS in Australia is filled with trauma and loss, working in the region reminds us that in many ways we have also been extremely lucky. Over the 35 years of Australia’s HIV epidemic we have seen the power of a coordinated response [..] By embracing the spirit of respectful collaboration that has characterised our movement in Australia from the beginning, we can make a real difference to the lives of our regional neighbours also grappling with the challenges of HIV".  Read more
 
ASHM advocates for the health workforce at Canberra World AIDS Day event
 
As part of the annual World AIDS Day Breakfast at Parliament House in Canberra, ASHM board member and Clinical Nurse Advisor Dr Elizabeth Crock appeared on a panel to discuss the role of nurses in the age of biomedical prevention for HIV.

Dr Crock spoke about the challenges facing Australia’s HIV workforce, including stigma and discrimination within healthcare, and the changing nature of the workforce itself. “We need to up-skill new generations [in the HIV workforce] to ensure advocacy for the needs of people affected by HIV continues within the healthcare system.” 
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Newly available HIV resources supporting health providers and patients to navigate the Australian health and immigration system

ASHM and Queensland Positive People along with an Expert Working Group are pleased to announce two new resources. “The release of the Medicare Ineligible Factsheet and the HIV and Immigration template represent an important step towards equity in HIV care in Australia” said ASHM Vice President Dr Nick Medland.

“Patients living with HIV or at risk of HIV who are Medicare ineligible are highly vulnerable and at risk of poorer health outcomes, discrimination in the health care and immigration systems and represent an “Achilles heel” in Australia’s HIV health response. Clinicians face many challenges working with these individuals, including adequately responding to their health care needs, seeking to avoid being in the position of having to withhold essential services like PrEP or ART and responding to requests for reports in the immigration process.” 
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ASHM continues to support the health workforce to ensure access to PrEP and best practice in guidelines, training and resources 
 
Following the watershed start to 2018 on April 1, HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis announced on the Australian Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme. ASHM has continued to work tirelessly to support primary health and allied health providers in best practice in guidelines, training and resources to prescribe PrEP. To-date in 2018, more than 780 health providers in Australia, and an additional 38 in New Zealand (including general practitioners and practice nurses) have attended ASHM PrEP courses either via face-to-face and webinar training, or online learning. Continue reading to find out more about our roll-out of education opportunities and updates in clinical guidelines to commence in 2019. See more
 
2019 Australasian Viral Hepatitis Elimination Conference  |  13 – 15 August 2019  |  Sydney, NSW
2019 Australasian Sexual Health Conference
16 – 18 September 2019
Perth, WA
2019 Australasian HIV & AIDS Conference
17 – 19 September 2019
Perth, WA