• Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies for the treatment and prevention of HIV 1 by Professor Daniel Kuritzkes

    Professor Daniel Kuritzkes

    Broadly neutralizing antibodies are being considered for treatment and prevention of HIV-1. They are antibodies that target one or other of the HIV envelope proteins. A number have been developed

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  • Paul Cameron: Introduction to Immunology – What clinicians need to know

    What I learned from this session was how little I currently know! I left the session a bit more knowledgeable but the task presented to Professor Cameron would require a short course rather than a 45 minute lecture. I understood things at the start but was soon lost. Not his fault

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  • Final summary

    What an amazing three days I’ve had in Hong Kong at the APACC 2018 conference, learning about the current thinking in prevention, treatment and future of HIV and co-infections in the Asia Pacific region. I’m very thankful to ASHM for awarding me a scholarship to attend the conference, which has given me so much to take back to Melbourne to discuss. Although my first-time blogging attempts may not completely reflect it, we heard and learned from some very passionate and forward thinking speakers who presented their research in HIV and Hepatitis.

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  • Final thoughts

    I have thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to attend the APACC conference. It has been a very inspiring conference, motivating and very relevant to my practice. The key themes throughout the conference are applicable and relevant in the Australian context. Concerns about confidentiality, stigma and discrimination from people at risk of, or living with HIV, are present within the Asia Pacific region. It is humbling to see the difficulties faced by affected communities throughout the region and the significant challenges of funding, discrimination, poverty, access to inclusive healthcare and treatment. However, it is invigorating to see the passion, dedication and creativity of communities and health care providers to provide these services in their culturally diverse settings.

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  • Reflections as a clinician on final day of APACC 2018

    The topic of the very last session of the conference was on viral hepatitis. I didn’t know what to expect initially. By the end of the session, I’ve dramatically increased my insights regarding Hep B and Hep C.

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  • Treatment for anorectal Chlamydia infection with Azithromycin 1g single dose in men who have sex without HIV infection

    Daisuke Mizushima

    This was an oral presentation and a poster of the same research about testing the cure rates of Azithromycin 1g used for treating anal Chlamydia in HIV positive and negative MSM in Japan. Daisuke acknowledged that previous studies had showed a high failure rate using Azithromycin to treat anal Chlamydia. The following slides describe the study undertaken in Japan:

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  • Drivers for mental health issues among young and old HIV infected individuals and opportunities for intervention

    Reena Rajasuriar

    This study looked at the prevalence, risk factors and health outcomes of depression and anxiety in PLHIV compared to matched controls. Reena stated that mental health issues were under reported and therefore under diagnosed and sadly under treated. She studied the issues of frailty in HIV positive older people and wanted to establish if there were interventions that could be used with young PLHIV to prevent mental health issues and frailty into the future.

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  • Reflections

    As day 3 of the APACC conference drew to a close I reflect back over the information sharing of the challenges and achievements of hard working individuals and organisations involved with HIV/HCV in the Asia Pacific region. When I think over the past 3 days as a pharmacist, I couldn’t help but think about relevance in my field and how can I employ what I have learned here into clinical practice. Whilst I recognise that Australia is very lucky with our health care system and access to HIV/HCV medications compared to other countries in the Asia Pacific region; there are still gaps where people living with HIV are falling through the cracks. With an increasing aging HIV population the likes of which has never been seen before, I feel pharmacy as a profession can help contribute as part of a holistic multidisciplinary model. Pharmacists are well placed to aid in recognition and screening of the long term complications of HIV multimorbidity such as cardiovascular disease, HTN, hyperlidaemia and diabetes associated with HIV/HCV . Further, pharmacy can aid therapy optimization via medicines reviews, quality use of medicines and medication education and counselling as well as smoking cessation support.

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  • Micro-elimination and simplification of HCV

    Gail Matthews of the Kirby Institute spoke of HCV elimination from a clinician’s perspective. Currently only 9 countries are on track to meet targets set out by WHO, with Malaysia and Georgia the only two low income countries. Throughout the conference we have heard the barrier of costs of accessing medications can have on effective roll out of health service programs. Whilst this is of course true it is not the complete solution in achieving HCV elimination. Dr Matthews illustrated that even in Australia where we are successfully meeting WHO targets and have universal access to HCV medications, DAA uptake has significantly declined.

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  • ASHM Symposium: The 4th 90 - Quality of Life

    Day 3 opened with ASHM presenting the goal of the 4th 90 – Good Health. I found this particularly relevant given over the past two days presentations we have heard the commonality of adverse health issues we are now seeing emerge with an aging HIV population with multimorbidity across the entire Asia Pacific region.

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