HIV & the Law: updated content from ASHM

Australasian Society for HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexual Health Medicine, 2019

The NEW Guide to Australian HIV Laws and Policies for Healthcare Professionals includes two new sections on Mandatory Testing for HIV and My Health Record.

This resource aims to provide health care workers with information on legal and ethical responsibilities under various laws and regulations related to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). It does not contain legal advice. Those seeking advice on individual cases should contact their health department, solicitor or their medical defence organisation as appropriate.

In the interests of brevity, laws have been summarised and re-written specifically as they relate to HIV. In many instances key legislation is more broadly targeted at a range of infectious diseases (with definitions varying by state).

All efforts have been made to ensure the content is current at time of publication.

Lastest Gay Community Periodic Survey for Adelaide released

Centre for Social Research in Health, UNSW, June 2019

Gay Community Periodic Survey: Adelaide 2018

Authors: Broady, T., Mao, L., Bavinton, B., Jeffries, D., Bartlett, S., Calabretto, H., Narciso, L., Prestage, G., & Holt.

The Adelaide Gay Community Periodic Survey is a cross-sectional survey of gay and homosexually active men recruited at a range of gay community sites in Adelaide, and online throughout South Australia. The major aim of the survey is to provide data on sexual, drug use, and testing practices related to the transmission of HIV and other sexually transmissible infections (STIs) among gay men. The most recent survey, the twelfth in South Australia, was conducted in November and December 2018 to coincide with the Adelaide Feast Festival.

Key points

– The proportion of men who reported ever having been tested for HIV increased from 83% in 2011 to 87% in 2018.

– The percentage of non-HIV-positive men who reported testing for HIV in the 12 months prior to the survey remained stable (and was reported by 71% in 2018), although the percentage reporting three or more HIV tests in the previous year increased (from 11% in 2014 to 22% in 2018).

– The use of HIV treatment by HIV-positive men has remained stable over time (and was reported by 93% of HIV-positive men in 2018). The percentage of men on antiretroviral treatment who reported an undetectable viral load also remained stable (reported by 94% in 2018).

Mobile phone apps remained the most common way that men met male sex partners, reported by 44% in 2018.

– The proportion of men with regular male partners reporting condomless anal intercourse with those partners (CAIR) increased from 55% in 2011 to 65% in 2018.

– The proportion of men with casual male partners reporting condomless anal intercourse with those partners (CAIC) increased from 38% in 2011 to 51% in 2018.

– Most of the recent increase in CAIC appears to be attributable to the growing proportion of HIV-negative men using pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP).

STI testing among HIV-negative men has remained stable over time, with 74% reporting any STI test in the year prior to the 2018 survey. The proportion of HIV-positive men reporting any STI test in the previous year decreased from 91% in 2011 to 72% in 2018.

Use of PrEP increased between 2014 and 2018 from 1% to 16% of non-HIV-positive men.

Are We Blinded by Desire? Relationship Motivation and Sexual Risk-Taking Intentions during Condom Negotiation

The Journal of Sex Research, Shayna Skakoon-Sparling & Kenneth M. Cramer (2019) DOI: 10.1080/00224499.2019.1579888

ABSTRACT

Effective condom negotiation skills support better sexual health for both men and women. The current study explored relationship motivation (motivation to establish and maintain long-term romantic relationships), gender, and sexual orientation as factors influencing the condom negotiation process.

Participants (177 heterosexual women, 157 heterosexual men, and 106 men who have sex with men) read a vignette describing an encounter with a hypothetical new sexual/romantic partner and responded to embedded items and scales.

Stronger relationship motivation predicted increased willingness to have condomless sex among women who perceived greater familiarity with the hypothetical partner. Gender and sexual orientation predicted different preferences for condom insistence strategies.

The findings suggest that there are a number of conditions that make it more difficult to recognize risk during a sexual encounter and demonstrate how the process of condom negotiation can be impacted by gender, sexual orientation, and relationship motivation.

Association between adolescent condom use and individual & environmental resilience protective factors

Aust NZ J Public Health.
2018; 42:230-3; doi: 10.1111/1753-6405.12744
Epub 2018 Mar 12.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Individual and environmental resilience protective factors are suggested to be associated with adolescent condom use; however, previous studies have not comprehensively examined such associations. This study aimed to determine the associations between condom use, and numerous individual and environmental resilience protective factors in sexually active Australian adolescents.

METHODS:

Participants were Grade 10 students attending 28 Australian government high schools (n=1,688). An online survey (2011) collected data regarding: sexual intercourse (past year), condom use and 14 individual and environmental resilience protective factors. Multivariable backward stepwise logistic regression models examined associations between student condom use and protective factors (total, subscale).

RESULTS:

Only total environmental protective factors remained in the final total score model; students with higher total environmental protective factors scores were 2.59 times more likely to always use a condom(95%CI:1.80-3.74). Only three of 14 protective factor subscales were associated with a higher likelihood of always using a condom in the final subscale model (individual: goals/aspirations; environmental: community participation, pro-social peers).

CONCLUSIONS:

Total environmental and three protective factor subscales demonstrated prominent associations with consistent use of condoms in sexually active adolescents. Implications for public health: Consideration of particular resilience protective factors in adolescent sexual risk behaviour prevention, such as condom use, is warranted.

First medical study on chest binding recently published

The first medical study on chest binding transgender and non-binary people was published last year. 

The researchers hope that the study will provide an initial roadmap for change, educating physicians on the benefits and impacts of binding and allowing those who bind to take charge of their health. They scoured peer-reviewed literature and information from health clinics, LGBTQ organizations, and online community resources, coming up with 28 potential health outcomes from binding. 1,800 respondents answered an online survey with questions ranging from how often they bound, what they used to bind their chests with, and their gender identity.

  • Read more about the study and chest-binding here 
  • Read study abstract here (for full text, see your librarian)

Harm reduction should address the specific needs of couples who inject drugs

nam/aidsmap, 21 March 2017

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, say Australian researchers.

Read more here