Position statement on Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination

VAC, 2015/2017

Community members have recently been expressing interest in human papillomavirus vaccines (HPV) in online discussions. Health bodies in both the UK and Ireland have recommended that all gay and bisexual men receive the vaccine in order to reduce their risk of certain cancers.

VAC developed a position statement on this issue back in July 2015 in association with Melbourne Sexual Health Centre, which states that VAC believes the vaccines should be made available free of charge to all gay, bisexual and other MSM under the age of 26, and to all people living with HIV.

Download the position statement (PDF) at this link: PositionStatement_HPVvaccination_JULY2015

Syphilis, Gonorrhea Cases Show Sharp Increase In England Following STI Budget Cuts

Tech Times, 6 July 2016, 11:39 am EDT

Cases of syphilis and gonorrhea in the United Kingdom soared following budget cuts on sexually transmitted infections (STI) testing.

Public Health England (PHE) has revealed that in 2015, there were 434,456 cases of STIs reported. Gonorrhea was diagnosed in 41,1932 people, which is a 10 percent spike compared to figures in 2014. On the other hand, syphilis diagnoses reached a total of 5,288 cases, which represents a 76 percent surge since 2012.

  • Read more here
  • Read the PHE report (PDF, 27 pages) here

Know your chances of contracting an STI

British Columbia Centre for Disease Control, Canada

A common question people have is “What are my chances of getting an STI?”  While there is no simple answer, the charts below give an estimate of your chances, when your partner has that sexually transmitted infection (STI). These charts are based on research where possible, and have been reviewed by STI experts in British Columbia. 

These charts don’t cover every situation or every STI.

For example, for HIV the charts do not address the fact that risk of transmission is even lower if your partner is on treatment for HIV and has undetectable viral load.

Here’s what the different chances mean in the charts:

  • Not passed (or possible only in theory): There is no possibility for passing the infection or it is theoretically possible, but there is no evidence that this happens.
  • Not commonly passed: This is not a common way to pass the infection but it may be possible with the right conditions (e.g., if condom breaks).
  • Can be passed:  The infection can be passed this way with the right conditions (for example, from skin which is not covered by a condom or barrier).
  • Easily passed: The infection is easily passed this way.

Links to charts:

HPV Sharply Reduced in Teenage Girls Following Vaccine, Study Says

Genital warts in young Australians 5 years into national HPV vaccination programme

BMJ; 346 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f2032 

Objective To measure the effect on genital warts of the national human papillomavirus vaccination programme in Australia, which started in mid-2007.

Conclusions The significant declines in the proportion of young women found to have genital warts and the absence of genital warts in vaccinated women in 2011 suggests that the human papillomavirus vaccine has a high efficacy outside of the trial setting. Large declines in diagnoses of genital warts in heterosexual men are probably due to herd immunity.

Read more here

 

HPV vaccination not linked to riskier sex, study finds

Harvard Medical School, February 9, 2015

Receiving the HPV vaccine does not increase rates of sexually transmitted infections in adolescent females, suggesting that vaccinating girls is not likely to promote unsafe sexual activity, according to new findings published in JAMA.

Read more here