ASHM Report Back
Clinical posts from members and guests of the Australasian Society for HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexual Health Medicine (ASHM) from various international medical and scientific conferences on HIV, AIDS, viral hepatitis, and sexual health.
Ms Barbara Telfer Epidemiologist For Hiv And Hiv Support Program Health Protection NSW
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This afternoon we had an opportunity to listen to Ms. Barbara Telfer, an Epidemiologist for HIV support program Health protection in NSW.
She spoke passionately about NSW goals to Virtually eliminate HIV transmission by 2020. Increase in HIV testing, diagnosis and early treatment irrespective of the CD4 count are the tools used to drive this goal home.The aim is to start treatment at least six months of diagnosis, follow them up to ascertain initiation of ART, retention in care and monitoring of CD4 count and viral load.
The surveillance started in 2013 and is ongoing and information required from participants was the year of diagnosis, demographics, language spoken at home, risk exposure, past testing history, cd4 count, and HIV viral load at diagnosis.
Statistics between 2013-2015 showed a general increase in HIV early ART initiation which is a positive change in clinical practice. The results were not impressive enough that there is need to reduce time to ART and increase early ART to the newly diagnosed especially CALD and residence in metro Sydney. Participants with a high CD4 count and or low Viral load or those lost in follow up post-diagnosis were top of the priority list.
It will be good to achieve this goal by 2020, were HIV infection will be a thing of the past.