Category: News

HIV criminalization and the newly launched expert consensus statement: Bringing science to justice

By Richard Elliott

One of the highlights of last month’s 22nd International AIDS Conference in Amsterdam (AIDS 2018) was the release of the “Expert consensus statement on the science of HIV in the context of criminal law”. In this statement, 20 eminent world scientists — including two leading Canadian researchers — provided their conclusive opinion on the low-to-no possibility of a person living with HIV transmitting the virus in various situations, including via sexual acts. Published in the peer-reviewed Journal of the International AIDS Society, the statement describes the current evidence on HIV transmission, treatment effectiveness and forensics so that HIV-related science may be better understood in criminal law contexts. You can learn more about the evidence in the statement from the short summary and a Frequently Asked Questions document, both available here.

AIDS 2018: The good and the bad

Sean Hosein, CATIE’s Science and Medicine Editor

By Sean Hosein

At this year’s International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2018) in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, we witnessed several pivotal developments in the global HIV response. We also saw some setbacks in our efforts to prevent infections and improve the lives of people living with HIV.

From clinical science and epidemiology to human rights and advocacy, here are some highlights of the good news and the bad news from AIDS 2018.

What it will take to eliminate hepatitis C in Canada

By Rivka Kushner

Canada is one of 194 countries that endorsed the World Health Organization’s Global Health Sector Strategy on Viral Hepatitis in 2016, committing to – among other things – the elimination of viral hepatitis as a major public health threat by 2030.

But what does eliminating viral hepatitis mean in practice? The recent Global Hepatitis Summit in Toronto from June 14 to 17, 2018, brought together researchers, healthcare providers, and public health practitioners from around the world to try to answer this question. Presenters shared the latest research findings, marked which countries are on track to meet the targets, and discussed what is needed in the rest of the world to get to elimination.

Le site d’injection supervisée de l’organisme montréalais Dopamine : bientôt un an déjà

Par Yanick Paradis

Depuis plus de 10 ans que nous attendions ce moment : les sites d’injection supervisée (SIS) sont arrivés! Nous y voilà rendus! Ça fait bientôt un an que nous sommes ouverts. Mise en contexte : les SIS sont un projet régional qui est chapeauté par plusieurs structures. Quatre organismes communautaires, dont Dopamine, et le Centre intégré universitaire de santé et de services sociaux du Centre-Sud-de-l’Île-de-Montréal sont dans le coup et assurent les ressources humaines nécessaires pour mettre en place un tel service. Ceci dit, Dopamine est un organisme en réduction des méfaits qui travaille en prévention VIH, VHC et autres ITSS dans le quartier Hochelaga-Maisonneuve à Montréal depuis plus de 24 ans. Dopamine écoute, réfère et accompagne les gens au travers de leurs demandes. Les valeurs de l’organisme sont l’humanisme, la solidarité et la proximité. Le SIS offre une complémentarité à l’offre de service de soir, de 20 h à 1 h du matin, 7 jours sur 7.

HIV and life insurance: A welcome change but questions remain

By Wendy Porch and Jeff Potts

Historically, people living with HIV in Canada have been excluded from access to life insurance. In recent years, however, both Manulife and Sun Life have started accepting applications from people living with HIV, now that HIV is widely recognized as a manageable chronic illness. Nevertheless, this significant change in policy is not well-known within the HIV sector. How can we change that and how can we facilitate access to life insurance for people living with HIV?

With these two questions in mind, we at Realize and the Canadian Positive People Network (CPPN) surveyed our members and the insurance sector to gain clarity from both sides as to what the underlying issues might be. We found out that life insurance is something that people living with HIV think about today, but few folks know that it’s an option. And, for the few people living with HIV who are aware that Manulife and Sun Life are offering life insurance options, many people wondered what is offered and were curious about where to go for more information or to apply. Some wanted to know what the “catch” might be.