Archives for 2014 | Body Positive News

HIV most often passed on by younger gay men who have undiagnosed HIV, are not on treatment, and have an ongoing partnership

A modelling study based on the UK’s HIV epidemic among gay men estimates that two-thirds of infections originate in men with undiagnosed HIV, 85% in men who are not taking treatment and 90% within the context of an ongoing sexual partnership. Moreover, HIV transmissions most frequently involve men under the age of 35 who report relatively high levels of sexual activity, according to the study published online ahead of print in AIDS.

But the findings suggest that men with primary infection contribute less to onward transmission than is sometimes thought. Read More...

New Body Positive Executive Director Appointed

The Board of Body Positive is pleased to announce that Mark Fisher has been appointed to the role of Executive Director to replace current CEO Bruce Kilmister who is retiring.

Mark is a highly regarded and hugely capable leader with significant experience internationally in the HIV sector. Before moving to New Zealand in 2013 Mark was a Director at The Ontario HIV Treatment Network in Toronto Canada for 8 years and prior to that spent 10 years working at Ontario Public Health Laboratory. Read More...

HIV reinfection has limited impact on disease progression

Superinfection with a second viral variant after initial HIV infection has been described in various cohorts. However, it is currently unclear whether superinfection is associated with a clinically significant impact on disease progression or management.

In this study, Keshet Ronen from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, University of Seattle, examined a well-characterised, prospective cohort of HIV negative women sex workers in Mombasa, Kenya, for cases of superinfection. Read More...

Unique Health Care Challenges for Older Adults with HIV

Individuals with HIV may be at a greater risk of developing age-related health conditions such as cardiovascular (heart) disease, chronic pulmonary (lung) disease, osteoporosis (bone density loss), and cognitive impairment (changes in memory and thinking) than similarly aged peers without HIV.

Oftentimes, multiple chronic conditions in an aging individual create health effects that are more detrimental than would otherwise be expected, making it even more critical for HIV care providers to take into consideration all of their patients’ clinical needs in addition to HIV concerns. Read More...

Retirement after 20 something years is around the corner

Bruce Kilmister will retire from Body Positive at the end of this year. Bruce first enlisted with Body Positive as a Member then shortly after volunteered as a Board Member. He was Chairman for many years and when it was decided to employ Bruce on a part time basis (that’s all we could afford in the early days - $500 per month) he stepped down from the position of Chairman in to the role of Chief Executive Officer.

Bruce will retire but stay on a consultancy contract for 6 months so Body Positive will be able to access him to ensure a smooth transition and strong ongoing momentum. “I’m a phone call away and I will be in often” says Bruce. “I wont be disappearing.” Read More...

Learning about additional HIV prevention methods doesn’t undermine gay men’s intentions to use condoms

Typically, health education messages encourage individuals to take a single course of action, without considering alternative options. However a ‘combination prevention’ approach may involve advocacy of more than one possible course of action. There has been little previous research on how receiving multiple prevention messages affects attitudes and intentions to use condoms. Condoms remain a particularly cheap and effective way of preventing HIV transmission in those who are happy to use them. Read More...

Every person living with HIV should be tested for Hepatitis

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infects the liver, causing inflammation. Over time as HCV-related inflammation continues, parts of this vital organ degrade as healthy tissue is replaced with useless scar tissue. This can lead to an increasingly dysfunctional liver. In turn, complications can develop, including serious infections, internal bleeding, kidney dysfunction and a greatly increased risk for liver cancer. Read More...

High effectiveness seen in English PrEP trial

The Steering Committee of the PROUD trial of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) in gay men in England announced today that participants currently on the deferred arm of the study, who have not yet started PrEP, will be recalled to their clinics and offered the opportunity to begin PrEP ahead of schedule. This is because the effectiveness seen in the trial has exceeded the threshold set for trial continuation.

Although the exact effectiveness seen in the trial is yet to be established pending analysis and follow-up of participants, the indications are that it is considerably in excess of that originally anticipated by the researchers. Read More...

MEDIA RELEASE - CEO of Body Positive Inc. to retire

The Board of Body Positive Inc. announces that after more than 20 years of service to the organisation, Chief Executive Officer Bruce Kilmister will retire from BP at the end of this year.

Bruce’s first involvement in BP was so long ago that no records are available to confirm exactly when that was. However, he has certainly been a Member of Body Positive from the mid-nineties, which is a far back as we can go in the archives. In the late nineties Bruce volunteered his time at Body Positive and was Chairman for the next five or six years, when he took up a permanent position of employment at Body Positive in the role of CEO. Read More...

Biggest group from New Zealand to travel to Melbourne

The International AIDS Society holds what is referred to as The World AIDS Conference every two years. In 2012 it was in Washington DC, and this year it comes downunder to Melbourne. Read More...

An interview with Michael Weinstein: We can’t let our guard down

Whether you are seeing more and more gay bareback porn, reading ads for men looking for condomless hook-ups, or looking at stats from the C.D.C., there is little doubt that unprotected sex among gay men is on the rise. There are too many different explanations to cover them all here. However, what we do know is that this generation didn’t live through the holocaust of the ‘80s and ‘90s. And listening to their elders talk about the “bad old days” resonates about as well as our parents talking about how poor they were during the Great Depression. Read More...

Second analysis concludes that we can’t eliminate the long-term possibility of HIV transmission from someone on treatment

A study that estimates the risk that someone living with HIV and taking antiretroviral therapy could transmit the virus reports that, on the basis of the few transmissions from heterosexual partners on treatment that have been reported, it is not possible to dismiss the risk of infection as zero.

The analysis by French researchers in Clinical Infectious Diseases estimates that the highest-likely risk of HIV being transmitted is between 8.7 and 13 transmissions per 100,000 sex acts; in other words, from one in about 11,500 to one in about 7700 acts. However, the researchers stressed to that this is the highest-likely risk: the actual risk may be lower than this and could indeed be zero. Read More...

Australia announces new National Strategy and targets the elimination of HIV by 2020

Substantial investment from all the State and Federal Health authorities will see targets set to have 90% of People living with HIV on treatment as soon as possible. The elimination of HIV transmission totally by 2020 with a 50% reduction by 2015 – just this time next year. These goals are to be included in the development of Australia’s Seventh National Strategy. Included in the strategy is the availability of medication from community based pharmacies whereas today they can only be dispensed from hospital pharmacies. Read More...

Body Positive Volunteer - Charlie Peters, wins National Award

Charlie Peters is a volunteer at Body Positive, and more often than not is found in the kitchen cooking food for the Friday pot luck lunch or helping others to understand more about their health and how to keep well fed on a budget. With equal apportion, Charlie has been an ambassador for Maori in helping Body Positive to reflect a Maori culture for bi-cultural understanding and inclusiveness for everyone. Read More...

Under 26 years of age? Then this message is for you..

The Government has announced that People Living with HIV under the age of 26 years are now to get free Gardasil Vaccinations. This is to protect against infection from the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) which can cause cancers and People Living with HIV are particularly vulnerable to this. Gardasil is also used to vaccinate women from the age of 12 against the virus that causes Cervical cancer. Read More...