Media Release | 1 July 2019 | The joint Australasian Sexual Health and HIV&AIDS Conferences are fast approaching, taking place on the 16th - 18th of September in Perth. Together, these conferences underscore the central role of partnerships across sexual health and HIV, and facilitating dialogue between researchers, clinicians, government and community members working across the fields of sexually transmissible infections and HIV in our region.
ASHM News | 1 July 2019 | Australian consensus statement to inform hepatitis B screening and antiviral management for immunocompromised patients with haematological and solid organ malignancies in Australia.
ASHM News | 1 July 2019 | ASHM, INHSU and the ID Crowd (our Instructional Designers) have won a LearnX award for “Best eLearning Project – Widespread Adoption” for our Hepatitis C in Primary Care and Drug and Alcohol Settings suite of internationally recognised e-Learning modules.
ASHM News | 1 July 2019 | We are pleased to announce the launch this month of the new ARV guidelines website, providing an accessible location to house the latest Australian commentary on the use of antiretroviral agents
ASHM News | 1 July 2019 | On 24 February 2019 ASHM convened a Queensland Prisons Forum on Hepatitis C Treatment and Opioid Substitution Therapy in collaboration with the Statewide Gastroenterology Clinical Network. A summary of the 2019 Forum and a set of recommendations based upon the presentations and discussion at this event is now available.
ASHM News | 1 July 2019 | The 2019 Deadly Sex Congress, an annual forum for Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander sexual health workers to update knowledge, build workforce capacity and share stories, was held in Brisbane on 30 April – 1 May for 56 participants.
ASHM update | 1 July 2019 | While we very much appreciate and rely on your financial support to ASHM, the value of a strong membership base goes beyond the financial contribution, allowing us to be a critical voice and influencer for the BBV and sexual health workforce. Your support is integral to our work on policy and strategic engagement, on facilitating access to and uptake of resources, and on implementing guidelines and training across Australia, New Zealand and the region.
ASHM update | 1 July 2019 | After 15 years ASHM is upgrading to an innovative (and cost effective) Sydney CBD office.
Sector Release | 1 July 2019 | World Hepatitis Day 2019 calls for all primary care providers to be proactive in their vital role in Viral Hepatitis elimination in Australia.
ASHM Update | 1 July 2019 | Scholarships are generally offered to those who have had abstracts accepted to the program, or have submitted abstracts.
Sector News | 15 June 2019 | ASHM adds our voice in recognising Craig Cooper for his exemplary work as CEO of Positive Life NSW.
Sector News | 2 June 2019 | The Australasian Viral Hepatitis Elimination Conference (AVHEC) 2019 is themed Building Momentum towards Elimination of Hepatitis B & C in Australasia, and will showcase the lessons learned and challenges ahead in the mission to eliminate viral hepatitis.
Media Release | 7 May 2019 | ASHM recognises and acknowledges the importance of up skilling early career nurses, those new to BBV STI care and midwives throughout Australia.
ASHM is dedicated to ensuring that mid to late career nurses and midwives and those that are highly specialised in their field are positioned to pass on their knowledge and experience to their colleagues. This view is shared by many of ASHM’s supporting peak professional and community organisations.
Media Release | April 2019 | These relationships are pivotal in ensuring the role of nurses and midwives is accurately recognised and that they are offered evidence based, high quality education and well-developed tools and material
Sector Release | 7 May 2019 | ASHM would like to acknowledge and sincerely thank Clinical Advisor Sue Mason for her contribution to ASHM and to nurses that are providing care to people with viral hepatitis and advanced liver disease - and to to congratulate Meryl Jones as the recipient of the 2019 Australian Primary Health Care Nurses Association (APNA) Nurse of the Year Award.
Sector Release | 15 April 2019 | This Australian consensus statement was developed to simplify the approach to testing and prophylaxis for HBV during cancer therapy including medical specialists in infectious diseases, hepatology, haematology, oncology and paediatrics.
Media Release | 22 March 2019 | The Australasian Society for HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexual Health Medicine (ASHM) has highlighted Australia’s
guidelines regarding the use of “on-demand” PrEP for preventing HIV, following the recent HIV diagnosis of a high-profile PrEP advocate in Sydney
Sector News | 1 April 2019 | ASHM has partnered with the International Network on Hepatitis and Substance Users (INHSU) and the Kirby Institute at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) to develop and deliver HCV education globally. The Hepatitis C in Primary Care and Drug and Alcohol Settings Education Program provides healthcare practitioners working in drug and alcohol or primary care with the knowledge and skills to expand HCV care beyond hospital settings.
Sector News | 1 March 2019 | To mark Zero Discrimination Day, today ASHM has launched Removing Barriers, a new online learning tool for addressing stigma and discrimination in healthcare settings against people affected by HIV, hepatitis B or hepatitis C. Each year the United Nations dedicates Zero Discrimination Day to the importance of speaking up and preventing discrimination from impeding everyone’s right to live a full life with dignity.
Sector News | 20 February 2019 | Now is your chance to participate in ASHM conferences, start planning your abstract for submission before the deadlines for Australasian Viral Hepatitis Elimination Conference (AVHEC19), 8th International Conference on Hepatitis Care in Substance Users (INHSU19), Australasian Sexual Health Conference (SH19), Australasian HIV&AIDS Conference (HIVAUS19), and 13th International Congress on AIDS in Asia & the Pacific (ICAAP13).
Sector News | 21 January 2019 | ASHM highlight its Conference and Event Management services that has been delivering excellence in research, science and health sector conferences for over 15 years. Find out how our team's award-winning Professional Conference Organisers (PCO) service can help with your next event. Also, find out more on how you can join the conversation in our multidisciplinary ASHM-managed sector conferences in 2019.
Sector News | 15 January 2019 | An external evaluation of the ASHM HBV s100 Community Prescriber Program (the Program), conducted by Zest Health Strategies in July 2018, has highlighted the program's key successes, recommendations to improvement, as well as, key structural barriers to greater general practitioner involvement in chronic hepatitis B health care.
News, Media Release | 4 December 2018 | Peak HIV, viral hepatitis, sexual health and community organisations today welcomed the release of five new National Blood Borne Virus (BBV) and Sexually Transmissible Infections (STI) Strategies by the Australian government.
News, Sector Release | 1 December 2018 | To-date in 2018, more than 780 health providers in Australia, and an additional 38 in New Zealand (including general practitioners and practice nurses) have attended ASHM PrEP courses either via face-to-face and webinar training, or online learning. Find out more on our roll-out of education opportunities and updates in PrEP clinical guidelines to commence in 2019.
News, Sector Release | 1 December 2018 | ASHM and Queensland Positive People along with an Expert Working Group are pleased to announce two new resources to support both health providers and patients navigate the Australian health and immigration system: Medicare Ineligible Factsheet and HIV and Immigration.
News, Sector Release | 1 December 2018 | This World AIDS Day, we should take the opportunity to harness our position within the region as committed leaders in the response to the HIV epidemic. Embracing the spirit of respectful collaboration that has characterised our movement in Australia from the beginning, we can make a real difference to the lives of our regional neighbours also grappling with the challenges of HIV.
News, Media Release | 30 September 2018 | ASHM, Australian Indigenous Doctors’ Association (AIDA) and National Association of People with HIV Australia (NAPWHA) have welcomed the Australian government’s release of five new National Blood Borne Virus (BBV) and Sexually Transmissible Infections (STI) Strategies in the lead up to World AIDS Day tomorrow.
News, Sector Release | 29 November 2018 | As part of the annual World AIDS Day Breakfast at Parliament House in Canberra, ASHM board member and Clinical Nurse Advisor Dr Elizabeth Crock appeared on a panel to discuss the role of nurses in the age of biomedical prevention for HIV. Dr Crock spoke about the challenges facing Australia’s HIV workforce, including stigma and discrimination within healthcare, and the changing nature of the workforce itself.
News, Sector Release | 5 November 2018 | ASHM's health website for people of culturally and lingustically diverse backgrounds and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, ALL GOOD, has been awarded as a finalist in the category of Community Campaign of the Year for the NSW Premier’s Multicultural Communications Awards (PMCA) recognising excellence in the multicultural media and marketing industry.
News, Media Release | 1 November 2018 | Health experts from across the Asia Pacific will gather in Auckland from 1–3 November for the 2018 IUSTI Asia Pacific Sexual Health Congress, to discuss the major challenges facing sexual and reproductive health in the region. Download a Media Pack containing more information, quotes and interview opportunities with experts.
News, Sector Release | 26-29 September 2018 | ASHM has partnered with Marie Stopes Timor-Leste to deliver HIV and STI Workforce Development Training in Dili, Timor-Leste, facilitated and presented by former-ASHM Board member, A/Prof Catherine O’Connor.
News, Media Release | 19 September 2018 | Health experts will gather at the 2018 Australasian HIV & AIDS Conference in Sydney from 24–26 September to share cutting-edge HIV research, innovations and community and clinical responses to key issues in the national and regional response to HIV. Download a Media Pack containing more information, quotes and interview opportunities with experts.
News, Media Release | 19 September 2018 | ASHM launched the updated ASHM Guide for Clinicians and other Healthcare Providers to discuss Undetectable = Untransmittable (U=U) in conjunction with a pre-conference event at the 2018 Australasian HIV&AIDS Conference dedicated to exploring the science behind U=U at the recent International AIDS Conference in Amsterdam (July 2018). The updated ASHM Guide featured as an example of how supportive public health policy from the scientific evidence to support community action.
News, Media Release | 19 September 2018 | ASHM is delighted to host the launch of a new global resource from ICASO — a Canadian organisation that acts as a global policy voice on HIV issues that impact diverse communities around the world — on what it means for women living with HIV and their understanding of what an undetectable HIV viral load means in relation to being unable to transmit HIV (U=U).
Sector Release | Adelaide, South Australia, 12 August 2018 | Empowering primary care has been the central theme underpinning a one-day forum held in Adelaide today, where a delegation of 50 general practitioners (GP) from all Australian States and Territories called their fellow primary care providers to action through the launch of the Aus GPs End Hep C statement. The ASHM-run 1-day Treating Hepatitis C in General Practice Forum was funded by The Kirby Institute. GPs and primary health care can find out more and/or become a signatory to the Aus GPs End Hep C Statement here.
Sector Release | 7 August 2018 | ASHM responds to Courier Mail report of Brisbane spitting incident by reiterating that HIV is not transmitted by spitting, and that responses to such incidents should be based on medical evidence rather than perpetuating common myths about how HIV and other blood-borne viruses are transmitted.
Sector Release | 31 July 2018 | ASHM welcomes the news that a regimen for treatment of chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, Maviret (glecaprevir/pibrentasvir), has been approved for listing on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).
Sector Release | July 2018 | ASHM welcomes the recent news from the World Health Organisation (WHO) that gender incongruence is no longer classified as a mental health disorder. In its draft version of the updated International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD-11), the WHO has reclassified gender incongruence as a sexual health condition. If approved by the General Health Assembly in 2019, the ICD-11 will be adopted in 2022. The WHO acknowledges with this change, that the classification of gender incongruence as a mental health disorder can result in significant stigma and harm for transgender people.
Sector Release | Hepatitis Awareness Week, 23-28 July 2018, Australia | With effective viral hepatitis treatments available to help manage hepatitis B and cure hepatitis C, Australia is leading the way for a future without viral hepatitis, which is the theme of Hepatitis Awareness Week 2018. An estimated 237,894 Australians are living with chronic hepatitis B (CHB) and 177,812 with chronic hepatitis C (CHC), at risk of death from cirrhosis and liver cancer. It is essential for primary care providers to know the risk factors, test, diagnose and treat if required, to prevent this.
Sector News | 20 June 2018 | The International Council of AIDS Service Organisations (ICASO) has recently issued a call to action for researchers to make an upfront acknowledgement of the role of people living with HIV at the beginning of any presentation of their work. This call to action comes from the slow simmer of people with HIV dissatisfied with being mentioned as an endnote in presentations and is based on the principles of greater involvement of people living with HIV or AIDS (GIPA).
News, Sector Release | 18 May 2018 | ASHM President, Dr Mark Bloch announces appointment of new ASHM CEO Alexis Apostolellis who most recently was CEO of the Australian branch of Marie Stopes International (MSI) which involved the operation of a pharmaceutical company as well as 17 clinics across Australia. Before this Alexis was the Chief Operating Officer of MSI Asia Pacific and Australia with responsibility for regional finance and operations. Alexis will take up his position on 2 July 2018.
Sector Release | 16 May 2018 | In 2017, as part of ASHM's Pacific Sexual Health Workforce Capacity Building Program – a joint regional capacity building initiative between ASHM and The Oceania Society for Sexual Health and HIV Medicine (OSSHHM) that provided clinical mentoring, training and resources to health professionals working in HIV, TB and STIs in eleven Global Fund-supported Pacific countries) – the development of Transgender Health Training for Pacific Health Workers was commenced with an introduction to addressing transgender health needs. A piloted one-day training on transgender health was delivered on 11 April, 2018 at the WHO Conference Room at Vanuatu Ministry of Health in Port Vila, Vanuatu with 15 health workers.
Sector Release | 14 May 2018 | ASHM has published a resource for clinicians with patients who have chronic hepatitis B that are in the process of applying for a permanent visa. This resource can be used by clinicians to support patients/visa applicants undergoing the process of meeting the health criteria set by the Department of Home Affairs. The provision of a ‘positive’ medical report in a migration case provided prior to the appointment with a Medical Officer of the Commonwealth can contribute to a favourable outcome for the applicant.
News, Sector Release | 5 and 12 May 2018 | On 5 May, the International Confederation of Midwives theme for 2018 is Midwives leading the way with quality care. ASHM acknowledges the vital role that Midwives have in the care, management and prevention of HIV, viral hepatitis and STIs for women and their newborns. International Nurses Day follows on 12 May with the International Council of Nurses' 2018 theme being 'Nurses: A voice to lead, health is a human right'. Read some messages from Scott McGill (ASHM Acting CEO) and Adjunct Professor Kylie Ward FACN, Chief Executive Officer of the Australian College of Nursing.
News, Sector Release | 10 May 2018 | ASHM has joined the call by leading HTLV-1 researchers, clinicians and patients to take action on HTLV-1 by signing an open letter to the WHO, published in an abbreviated form in The Lancet. The letter calls on the WHO to support the promotion of proven, effective transmission prevention strategies for HTLV-1, in much the same way it already does for HIV, HBV and HCV.
News, Sector Release | 9 May 2018 | The National Program Committee for the 2018 Australasian HIV&AIDS Conference is pleased to outline the following initiatives for people living with HIV and other priority groups and communities to promote and commit to meaningful engagement at this year’s conference to be held in Sydney from 24 - 26 September 2018. "ASHM is committed to ensuring that community engagement goes beyond rhetoric into meaningful practice and we both value and rely on the support, expertise, collaboration and guidance of our community partners in the sector," said Scott McGill, Acting ASHM CEO.
News, Sector Release | 8 May 2018 | Menzies School of Health Research (Menzies) has received National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) funding and will work in in partnership with the NT Department of Health, the Australasian Society for HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexual Health Medicine (ASHM), Katherine West Health Board Aboriginal Corporation, Miwatj Health Aboriginal Corporation, the Northern Territory AIDS and Hepatitis Council (NTAHC) and community service providers to eliminate chronic hepatitis B (CHB) from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population in the Northern Territory (NT).
News, Sector Release | 4 April 2018 | A recent report from WHO in Papua New Guinea (PNG) has highlighted the enormous challenges and ongoing impact of a 7.5 Richter scale earthquake which hit two provinces on 26 February with over 190 subsequent aftershocks. “The recent earthquake has resulted in a significant amount of damage to key infrastructure and services [..] ongoing support is needed to ensure that that the communities affected are not further disadvantaged by this unfortunate natural disaster. A number of clinics that we work with have reported being unable to provide services to patients due to damage that was sustained during the earthquake,” said lead ASHM International clinical advisor, Dr Arun Menon.
News, Sector Release | 28 March 2018 | The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) and the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) have joined forces to produce a guide that aims to improve the level of healthcare currently being delivered to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients and close the gap. The National guide to a preventive health assessment for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is a practical resource intended for all health professionals delivering primary healthcare to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people. Its purpose is to provide GPs and other health professionals with an accessible, user-friendly guide to best practice preventive healthcare for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients.
News, Sector Release | 28 March 2018 | With recent reports indicating alarming rates of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in adolescents and young adults in remote communities in northern and central Australia, the Australasian Sexual Health Alliance (ASHA) urge that these reports should prompt urgent action to improve sexual health services in these communities.
News, Sector Release | 26 March 2018 | The 2017/18 critical review of the Australian STI Management Guidelines for use in primary care is now complete with a focus on STI and syndrome management. Important changes have been made to the management of urethritis, cervicitis, PID, anorectal syndromes and Mycoplasma Genitalium (MG). Many of the changes have been promoted by a better understanding of MG.
Sector Release | 22 March 2018 | The Deadly Sex Congress, an annual forum for Indigenous Sexual Health Workers from across Queensland to update their knowledge, build workforce capacity and share their stories was run at the Holiday Inn, Cairns from the 20 – 22 March 2018 for 70 attendees. First held in 2003, the Congress has alternated locations between Cairns and the Gold Coast/Brisbane area. It is organised by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sexual Health Workers for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Sexual Health Workers through an Organising Committee Structure coordinated by ASHM.
News, Sector Release | 22 March 2018 | ALL GOOD is a commonly used Australian expression meaning "everything is fine; there's nothing to worry about". But why was this chosen for a website designed for people of culturally and lingustically diverse backgrounds and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander background—focusing on key information on BBVs and STIs and providing tools and referral pathways to testing and treatment?
News, Media Release | 21 March 2018 | ASHM congratulates the Federal Health Minister, the Hon. Greg Hunt’s announcement of a landmark in HIV prevention to approve HIV-prevention drugs – tenofovir with emtricitabine, known as PrEP – on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme from 1 April, thereby providing broader access for any doctor or general practitioner to be able prescribe PrEP to an Australian resident who holds a current Medicare card.
News | 20 March 2018 | Today, the staff and Board of ASHM add their voices to the torrent of messages of condolence and appreciation from around the world to one Australia’s most distinguished clinicians, researchers and leaders, Scientia Professor David Cooper, AO who passed away on Sunday 18 March after a short illness.
News | 8 March 2018 | Today, the staff and Board of ASHM adds their voices to the messages of condolence on the passing of Tony Maynard. We were honoured to have him as part of the ASHM team as a Senior Education Officer in the early 2000s—an era of greater optimism in the HIV epidemic bought on with new treatments—ensuring that a generation of clinicians properly met the needs of their patients in providing high-quality HIV treatment and care services. Tony was an enduring and integral part of the response to HIV in Australia over three decades across an enviable range of roles and contributions and will be sorely missed.
News, Sector Release | 6 March 2018 | The Fourth National Hepatitis B Mapping Report 2016 and the First National Hepatitis C Mapping Report 2016 were launched today (pictured) by the WHO Collaborating Centre for Viral Hepatitis Epidemiology, The Doherty Institute in partnership with ASHM. These reports reveal geographic disparities in Australia’s progress towards the elimination of viral hepatitis, and data can be used to assess the progress Australia has made towards the National Hepatitis B Strategy 2014-2017 targets, the National Hepatitis C Strategy 2014-2017 targets, as well as the WHO Global Health Sector Strategy on Viral Hepatitis target for 2030 which Australia is a signatory to.
Sector News | 23 February 2018 | ASHM has held a Hepatitis C Treatment in Prisons Forum in Brisbane aimed at bringing together health professionals from across Queensland – who work in correctional settings and provide in-reach services for viral hepatitis – to discuss models-of-care, challenges and solutions in moving towards the elimination of hepatitis C from Queensland correctional centres.
News, Sector Release | 9 February 2018 | ASHM – the peak body representing the clinical HIV workforce, celebrates the decision of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) and their announcement today to recommend the listing of HIV PrEP on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) for HIV prevention. ASHM has been working collaboratively to make PrEP available across all jurisdictions in Australia, and advocating for prompt and equitable access of this HIV prevention strategy to bring benefit to individuals and the Australian population.
News, Sector Release | 6 February 2018 | Following a verdict handed down today in the WA District Court, the Scarlet Alliance, the Australian Sex Workers Association, ASHM, the National Association of People with HIV Australia (NAPWHA) and the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations (AFAO) have highlighted the negative impact of the use of criminal law on Australia’s HIV response.
News | 26 January 2018 | People who have worked to fight HIV and support people living with HIV were among those receiving this year’s prestigious Australia Day honours. Among them, one of ASHM's founding members circa 1980s, Dr Peter Creighton from Sydney, awarded Member (AM) in the division of the Order of Australia for significant service to medicine in the prevention and treatment of HIV and tuberculosis as a clinician, researcher and mentor.
News | 20 January 2018 | ASHM would like to share our deepest condolences for the passing of President of the Samoa Fa’afafine Association (SFA), Afioga So'oalo Roger Stanley on 20 January 2018. Roger forged new grounds for fa’afafines and fa’atamaloas in Samoa through the many programmes and community health projects she spearheaded to bring awareness for HIV and STI testing.
News, Sector Release | 12 December 2017 | The Australian Injecting and Illicit Drug Users League (AIVL), in partnership with The ID Crowd and Australasian Society for HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexual Health Medicine (ASHM), announce the release the 'Normal Day' – a new online training module, consisting of a podcast series and resources, designed to enhance communication and understanding between people who use drugs and healthcare professionals.
News, Sector Release | 7 November 2017 | An international community brief on U=U (Undetectable = Untransmissible) drafted by the International Council of AIDS Service Organisation (ICASO) based out of Toronto, Canada has been launched at the 2017 Australasian HIV&AIDS Conference — the conference of the Australasian Society for HIV Medicine (ASHM) currently being held in Canberra, Australia, this week.
News, Media Release | 6 November 2017 | Health experts gathered at the 2017 Australasian HIV&AIDS Conference in Canberra this week are calling for more to be done to address inequalities in HIV efforts. New national statistics released from the Kirby Institute at the conference today reveal that in 2016 over half (55%) of HIV infections in heterosexual people are diagnosed late, with people carrying the infection unknowingly for four years or more. Heterosexuals make up about 1 in 5 of HIV diagnoses in Australia.
News, Media Release | 6 November 2017 | As new national statistics reveal an unprecedented spike in new HIV infections in Indigenous Australians, a little known HIV-related virus has been found to be highly endemic to Australia’s remote communities. However most people with the infection don’t even know they have it. “We are desperately seeking action and commitment from Government to eradicate this deadly virus,” says Dr Lloyd Einsiedel, Executive Director Central Australia, Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute, who is holding a special session on the topic at the Australasian HIV&AIDS and Sexual Health Conferences in Canberra today.
News, Media Release | 1 October 2017 | Ita Buttrose today marked International Day of Older Persons by launching a new nationally-accredited training program for frontline aged care staff who provide support to people with HIV in aged-care settings. The first nationally-accredited training of its kind focuses on the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to provide support to people with HIV in a variety of aged-care settings. These include residential care, family homes and community-day settings.
Sector News | 4 April 2017 | The shortage of adult formulation Engerix-B (hepatitis B vaccine) that Australia has experienced since November 2016, is expected to continue until at least January 2018. A shortage of the alternative vaccine H-B-Vax-II® is also now being experienced due to an increase in demand for its use.
Sector News | 26 September 2017 | Today on World Contraception Day – the annual worldwide campaign to improve awareness of contraception and to enable young people to make informed choices on their sexual and reproductive health, ASHM's International Program takes the opportunity to highlight some of its work that supports the strengthening of Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) services in our Pacific region.
Sector News | 15 September 2017 | According to the Global Burden of Disease study released, deaths caused by viral hepatitis have surpassed all chronic infectious diseases including HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis. The study illustrates that in 2016, the total deaths caused by viral hepatitis, including liver cancer, acute cases, cirrhosis, hepatitis A, E, B, C and D account for 1.34 million deaths globally (2,113 deaths in Australia), exceeding tuberculosis (1.2 million; 73 in Australia), HIV/AIDS (1 million; 74 in Australia) and malaria (719,000; 0 in Australia). In Australia, HBV accounted for 1023 deaths (including 657 from cirrhosis and 269 from liver cancer) and HCV for 1078 deaths (including 585 from cirrhosis and 488 from liver cancer).
Sector News | 10-16 September 2017 | Victorians are being encouraged to visit their GP to get tested, and if required, treated, in a bid to reduce surging rates of STIs including gonorrhoea, syphilis and chlamydia, and blood borne viruses among at-risk populations. Minister for Health Jill Hennessy also announced a package which will include $247,000 to the North West Melbourne Primary Health Network to help GPs across Victoria detect and treat STIs, sooner. From October 2017, the Victorian HIV and Hepatitis Integrated Training and Learning (VHHITAL) program will be expanded to support more GPs to test more people, more often. The program educates and trains GPs for the diagnosis, treatment and management of HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C and STIs.
Community and Peer Statement | 6 September 2017 | This statement was developed by peer delegates from across the world at the INHSU 2017 Community Day, held on Tuesday, 5th September 2017, and presented to the opening plenary session of the 6th International Symposium on Hepatitis Care in Substance Users (INHSU 2017). At INHSU 2017 the community most affected by hepatitis C - people who use drugs - call upon researchers, clinicians and all delegates to fight alongside us for our right to treatment.
Sector News, Media Release | 6 September 2017 | An international conference bringing together hepatitis C experts from around the world is today calling for strategies to prioritise people who use drugs, saying hepatitis C elimination is impossible without them. “The number of people around the world dying from hepatitis C is increasing. We have the tools to reverse this trend, to eliminate this disease and save millions of lives. But it will not happen until people who use drugs become a focus of our efforts,” said Associate Professor Jason Grebely, President of the International Network of Hepatitis C in Substance Users (INHSU), the convenors of the conference.
Sector News | 6 September 2017 | Critical steps towards addressing HIV in Australia provides a unique perspective on the current state of HIV in Australia, and is a product of close consultation with community representatives, community-based healthcare professionals and people living with HIV.
News, Media Release | 1 September 2017 | Adjunct Associate Professor Levinia Crooks, AM has resigned due to health reasons, as Chief Executive Officer of ASHM. A/Prof Crooks has worked tirelessly for the organisation for eighteen years and her outstanding professional and personal contribution to the HIV and broader BBV and sexual health responses in Australia have been invaluable.
News, Media Release | 31 August 2017 | ASHM strongly oppose the measures contained in schedules 12, 13 and 14 of the Federal Government’s Social Services Legislation Amendment (Welfare Reform) Bill 2017. The provisions are ineffective and likely to further increase stigma, marginalisation and poverty we urge they not be pursued.
News, Media Release | 23 August 2017 | ASHM congratulates the NSW Ministry of Health under the leadership of Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant with remarkable data released today in the NSW HIV Second Quarter Data Report 2017. “These new data mark 12 months of rapid decline in new HIV diagnoses among gay and bisexual men – the lowest recorded number of new HIV diagnosis in NSW since HIV emerged in the 1980s,” Dr Chant said. “NSW is a world leader in preventing HIV and is on track to achieve its goal of virtually eliminating HIV transmission by 2020 under the NSW HIV Strategy 2016-2020.”
News, Media Release | 18 August 2017 | The Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC), the key committee of experts which advises new medicines for listing on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) announced that it has deferred the application from Gilead Sciences and Mylan Australia to have their products approved for HIV Pre Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP). PrEP takes the form of a daily tablet containing tenofovir and emtricitabine and, when used daily reduces the risk of HIV transmission by up to 99%.
News, Media Release | 1 August 2017 | Australia is poised to be one of the first countries in the world to eliminate hepatitis C, according to experts gathered at the Australasian Viral Hepatitis Elimination Conference in Cairns today.
News, Media Release | 1 August 2017 | ASHM welcomes the addition of the hepatitis C treatment drug EPCLUSA® (SOFOSBUVIR with VELPATASVIR) to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) from 1 August 2017 as both an Authority Required General Schedule (Section 85) and Highly Specialised Drugs (HSD) Program (Section 100) listing.
News | 24 July 2017 | For three ASHM-managed conferences this year – the Australasian Viral Hepatitis Elimination Conference (AVHEC), the Australian HIV&AIDS Conference and Australasian Sexual Health Conference – ASHM are proudly supporting SEW (Supporting + Empowering Women) in a new initiative that will supply our conference delegates with a conference satchel from this registered Australian NGO.
News, Media Release | 28 July 2017 | With the availability of effective vaccines and treatments for hepatitis B and a cure for hepatitis C, the elimination of viral hepatitis is achievable and this is the theme of World Hepatitis Day 2017. With close to half a million Australians living with chronic hepatitis B and C, it is likely there is someone who attends your practice living with hepatitis. It is vital for primary care providers to know the risk factors, test and diagnose people living with hepatitis, to enable treatment to start early enough to halt serious liver damage.
News, Media Release | 6 July 2017 | The new ASHM Australian HIV Pre-exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) Clinical Guidelines have been published in the Journal of Virus Eradication (Journal of Virus Eradication 2017; 3: pp168–184). These guidelines represent an adaptation and a revision of the 2014 United States Centers for Disease Control's PrEP guidelines. ASHM thanks the CDC for this opportunity to update ASHM’s 2015 PrEP guidelines by using the structure and format of the 2014 CDC PrEP guidelines.
News | 30 June 2017 | Starting on 1 July 2017, ASHM will begin a new four year contract with Queensland Health, continuing our role in workforce development in HIV, viral hepatitis and sexual health across Queensland. We look forward to continuing to deliver this work in partnership with Primary Health Networks, Hospital and Health Services and community based organisations.
Position Statment | 16 June 2017 | A joint Position Statement has been released which aims to strongly refute and reject the findings of the Cochrane Review Report titled Direct-acting antivirals for chronic hepatitis C, published by the Cochrane Hepato‐Biliary Group first published on 6 June 2017.
News, Media Release | 16 June 2017 | The Australasian Society for HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexual Health Medicine (ASHM) stand united with leading health professionals involved in the treatment of hepatitis C to strongly reject the conclusions drawn by a Cochrane Review report first published on 6 June 2017 by Cochrane Hepato‐Biliary Group, which analysed data from a number of clinical trials to examine whether there is evidence that direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy prevents liver disease, liver cancer or death.
News | 1 June 2017 | Clinical mentoring is critical to ensuring that service providers are supported to provide high quality and up to date HIV and STI care and treatment. ASHM has supported the National Catholic AIDS Office, Papua New Guinea through the Collaboration for Health in Papua New Guinea (CHPNG) since 2003, to strengthen local capacity to manage and care for HIV-positive individuals by training teams of healthcare workers by region or centre; and to provide ongoing support of trained healthcare teams through regular mentoring visits from Australia based clinical specialists.
News | 1 June 2017 | ASHM to roll out education to strengthen the capacity of healthcare professionals working in drug and alcohol clinics or with people who use drugs. The Education Program will be rolled out across Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, the Australian Capital Territory and Western Australia throughout 2017. ASHM have engaged with experts in each State to deliver the training including expertise across gastroenterology, hepatology and addiction medicine.
News, Media Release | 1 June 2017 | ASHM welcomes the change to the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) which allow nurse practitioners to prescribe direct-acting antiviral (DAA) medicines for the treatment of hepatitis C. This change will enable increased capacity for nurse practitioners to enhance the level of care they provide to their patients and clients living with hepatitis C.
News | 12 May 2017 | ASHM encourage our ASHM members to increase the The Journal of Virus Eradication's readership, which will help to support this open-access publication that is free of charge to authors. Please take the time to look at the Journal and submit your work.
News | 4 May 2017 | Mark Wainberg, PhD, Professor in the departments of Medicine, Microbiology and Immunology and in Pediatrics at McGill University, died tragically of an asthma attack that he suffered while swimming with his family on 11 April 2017 in Bal Harbour, Florida.
News | 28 April 2017 | Nurses to participate in focus groups for the development of an ASHM project aimed at combatting stigma and discrimination experienced by people living with blood borne viruses accessing health care
News | 4 April 2017 | ASHM is aware that there is currently a current shortage of hepatitis B vaccine in Australia due to a precautionary halt in the manufacturing process and an on-going supply constraint of GSK Engerix-B® (Hepatitis B surface antigen recombinant (yeast) vaccine) adult. As a result CSL-Seqirus who make H-B-Vax-II are experiencing unusually high demand which they can’t completely meet.
News | 10 April 2017 | Great strides have been made in treating and managing BBVs such as hepatitis B, C and HIV in recent times, meaning people living with these conditions can lead full, healthy lives. But is the promise of these treatments being fulfilled for patients?
News | 2-8 April 2017 | The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) celebrates World Health Worker Week to recognize the lasting impact health workers make around the world.
News | 4 April 2017 | ASHM staff, Senior Project Officer Katelin Haynes and Clinical Nurse Melinda Hassall, have concluded the coordination and delivery of five training courses on HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C and STIs for a wide audience in Far North Queensland having traveled to Cairns, Thursday Island and Bamaga from the 13-17 March 2017.
News | 4 April 2017 | Australia21 gathered for a one day Roundtable involving 11 senior + experienced law and law enforcement officials, supplemented by five people from drug services and drug research, to consider how Australia could start to make some progress in this field.
News, Media Release | 6 March 2017 | Celebrate. Advocate. Inspire. Empower. March 9 will be the second National Day of Women Living with HIV. Coming the day after International Women's Day, this awareness-raising day was created by Femfatales, a network of women living with HIV of the National Association of People with HIV Australia (NAPWHA).
News | 8 December 2016 | Positive Life NSW (PLNSW) urges all people diagnosed with HIV + our clinicians to commence combination anti-retroviral therapy (cART) immediately at the point of diagnosis or to speak with your doctor about your options if you’re yet to start treatment.
News | 1 March 2017 | The International Congress for Tropical Medicine and Malaria is one of the world’s leading tropical medicine conferences, and has been held every four years since 1914. Held in Brisbane, Australia, in September 2016, ASHM was pleased to have partnered with the Australian Society for Parasitology (ASP) and the Australasian Society for Infectious Diseases (ASID) to allow ASHM members to attend the sessions focussing on HIV in developing countries and HIV coinfections with other sexually transmitted infections.
News, Media Release | 28 February 2017 | South Australians at a high risk of acquiring HIV will have the opportunity to benefit from the latest HIV prevention medication through a new partnership. Following the announcement of the Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) access trial late last year, Victoria's Alfred Health has been chosen to partner with the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI), SA Health and local clinics for the study to begin in April.
News | 1 December 2016 | North Western Melbourne PHN is marking World AIDS Day on 1 December by committing to make HIV and AIDS a thing of the past in Melbourne. Melbourne is a Fast Track City, a global network of cities committed to ending the global AIDS epidemic by 2030 through better awareness, prevention and access to treatment. NWMPHN is supporting this goal by helping equip GPs and other primary health care professionals to play their part in cutting HIV infection rates in the community.
News, Conference Resource | 30 November 2016 | The Australasian HIV & AIDS Conference is the premier medical/scientific conference in the Australasian HIV and related diseases sector. The Report from the 2016 Conference held in Adelaide from 16–18 November is now available.
News | 22 February 2017 | ASHM staff will be travelling to Cairns, Thursday Island and Bamaga from the 13-17 March 2017 to run 6 courses on HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C and STIs for a wide audience. This will include a Hepatitis B s100 Prescriber Course on Thursday Island on Wednesday 15 March, for which travel scholarships are still available.
News, Media Release | 22 February 2017 | The Lord Mayor of Sydney has today presented the Kirby Institute at UNSW Sydney with the key to the city, recognising 30 years of outstanding work with communities to address the HIV epidemic. The symbolic presentation is the highest honour a city can confer upon an individual or an organisation.
News | 1 December 2016 | HIV is still here - and it's on the move is the national World AIDS Day theme encouraging Australians to educate themselves and others about HIV; to take action to reduce the transmission of HIV by promoting prevention strategies; and to ensure that people living with HIV can participate fully in the life of the community, free from stigma and discrimination.
News | 29 November 2016 | Bridget Haire (AFAO President + post-doctoral research fellow, the Kirby Institute) welcomes delegates in the opening plenary of the 16th Australasian HIV&AIDS Conference on 16 November 2016: A quick and dirty summary through a community lens.
News | 13-16 February 2017 | The ASHM Scholarship Program offered scholarships to HIV s100 prescribers (GP/Primary care), Sexual Health Physicians & Hospital Based Specialists managing HIV to attend CROI 2017 (Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections) held from 13-16 February, 2017 in Seattle, Washington. On this webpage, five clinicians report back from CROI (as our ASHM scholarship recipients) with blog posts focussing particularly on HIV therapy, HIV comorbidities, and HIV immunepathogenesis.
News | 21 February 2017 | Vulnerable populations in the Pacific are currently not receiving adequate HIV services. This was a key finding of a study conducted by University of New South Wales the and ASHM in 2016 in nine Pacific Island countries in Kiribati, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, The Kingdom of Tonga, Samoa, Cook Islands, Palau, Federated States of Micronesia and The Republic of Marshall Islands.
News, Media Release | 18 November 2016 | Delegates at Australia’s national HIV/AIDS conference have condemned the governments of S. Australia, W. Australia and Northern Territory over laws that force people accused of criminal offences to undergo mandatory HIV and blood-borne virus testing.
News, Media Release | 11 November 2016 | Rapid developments in technology are transforming the face of Australia's sexual health - both in terms of sexual activity and our means to respond - and Australia needs to 'rethink' its approach to keep up with changing times, say sexual experts.
News | 18 January 2017 | ASHM was proud to partner with the Sexual Health Society of Queensland (SHSQ) in two joint clinical meetings during AIDS awareness week in November 2016 and will look forward to continuing this partnership in 2017.
News | 19 December 2016 | Bristol-Myers Squibb would like to inform you that the sale and distribution of all strengths of ZERIT® (stavudine) Capsules and Powder for Oral Solution (OS) Videx® (didanosine) will be phased out globally and in New Zealand, effective by March 2017.
News, Media Release | 11 November 2016 | New national statistics released from the Australasian Sexual Health and HIV&AIDS Conferences today reveal that HIV in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is at an all-time high, with 2015 seeing the highest number diagnosed with HIV since 1992. The rate of HIV notification among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people is now more than double the rate in non-Indigenous Australians, and has increased each year for the last five years.
News | 11 November 2016 | This consensus statement was written by leading HIV clinicians and scientists and published in the Medical Journal of Australia on 7 November 2016. The statement is also available on the MJA website.
News | 9 November 2016 | Australia enjoys international acclaim for its revolutionary response to HIV, and most recently, hepatitis C. And rightly so. Not only are we the only country in the world to offer universal access to new, highly effective hepatitis C cures, but our willingness to embrace the latest research – and build evidence-based responses founded on multisector collaboration – are the envy of the world. Yet despite these successes, stigma and discrimination by the health workforce threaten to prevent us from optimising these achievements. It is the responsibility of all health professions, including junior doctors, to educate themselves and take the time to understand the needs of these diverse and often vulnerable populations.
News, Media Release | 1 November 2016 | ASHM welcomes changes to the Pharmaceutical Bureau Scheme (PBS) which will allow skilled and experienced clinicians to initiate hepatitis C treatment using direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) for their patient.
News | 28 October 2016 | People working in the Sexual Health + HIV-sector with Australian rural and remote communities are encouraged to join two exciting delegations, in the final lead up to the Australasian Sexual Health + HIV&AIDS Conferences + held in Adelaide this November.
News | 26 October 2016 | The 2016 Deadly Sex Congress was held in Brisbane from 19-20 October with 53 delegates working in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander sexual health from across Queensland participating in two days of learning, sharing stories and networking.
News, Media Release | 18 October 2016 | Since May 2016, it has been reported that over 3,700 people suspected of using and/or selling drugs have been murdered in the Philippines. These atrocities has been carried out with the explicit endorsement of Filipino President, Rodrigo Duterte.
News | 17 October 2016 | With registrations closing soon for this year's 2016 Australasian HIV+AIDS Conference held in Adelaide (Wednesday 16 - Friday 18 November 2016) that will be held back-to-back with the Australasian Sexual Health Conference (Monday 14 - Wednesday 16 November 2016) — selected members of the conference committee share their voices of encouragement to invite you to join the delegation.
News | 8 October 2016 | New national statistics released today from the 10th Australasian Viral Hepatitis Conference show that Australia is making great progress towards eliminating hepatitis C, with record numbers now being cured of the disease. The challenge now is how to effectively engage diverse populations in both prevention and treatment programs, and to overcome barriers in the health system preventing many people living with both hepatitis C and hepatitis B from coming forward for testing and treatment.
News, Media Release | 28 September 2016 | New national reports released today show that despite Australia’s great progress towards eliminating hepatitis C, stigma and discrimination by health workers is a barrier preventing many at risk from coming forward for diagnosis + care.
News | 15 September 2016 | The Deadly Sex Congress is an annual forum for Indigenous Sexual Health Workers from across Queensland to update their knowledge, build workforce capacity and share their stories. The congress is run this year in Brisbane from 19-20 October 2016.
News | 15 September 2016 | WORKING in the HIV HEALTH SECTOR? Join a top-rated educational conference (16–18 November, Adelaide, Australia) with world-renowned speakers – learn about new research findings in the sector + increase your knowledge to develop new work practices.
News | 14 September 2016 | Join a multi-disciplinary delegation at the 2016 Australasian Sexual Health Conference (14–16 November, Adelaide, Australia) promising an exciting annual get-together for anyone in the sexual health community.
News, Media Release | 12 September 2016 | Prisons provide one of the most significant opportunities to drive down the prevalence of hepatitis C, and help reach global WHO elimination goals, says new research presented at the 5th International Symposium on Hepatitis Care in Substance Users organized by the International Network for Hepatitis in Substance Users (INHSU).
News, Media Release | 12 September 2016 | Global health experts are today are calling for the removal of restrictions preventing people who use drugs from accessing new hepatitis C cures. So long as these restrictions exist, the goal of disease elimination will remain out of reach, they say. They are gathered in Oslo for the 5th International Symposium on Hepatitis Care in Substance Users, where new research continues to highlight not just the pivotal role treatment for people who use drugs plays in reducing hepatitis C transmission, but also how it can be rolled out to achieve best results.
News | 29 August 2016 | Invested in a future of #NoHep in Australasia? We urge you to join a multi-disciplinary delegation at the Australasian Viral Hepatitis Conference (29 Sept – 1 Oct 2016, Gold Coast). The registration closing date to join closes soon on 18 September.
News | 29 August 2016 | The 3rd International HIV/Viral Hepatitis Co-Infection Meeting: Improving Diagnosis, Antiviral Therapy and Access was held on 17 July 2016, Durban, South Africa.
News, Media Release | 19 August 2016 | The Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC), the key committee of experts which advises government on which drugs to subsidise through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) today announced that it has rejected the application from Gilead Sciences to list Truvada® for HIV Pre Exposure Prophylaxis (PREP).
News | 28 July 2016 | The introduction of legislations to HIV and hepatitis medications on the Pharmaceutical Bureau Scheme's Highly Specialised Drug (HSD) programs in 2015 and 2016 have changed the way that pharmacies have been able to prescribe and dispense these drugs. As a result, community pharmacies are placed in an increasingly central and pivotal role in managing the treatment and ongoing care of clients in the Australian community. Pharmacists – both in hospital and community settings – are now urged to become part of an exciting delegation of three forthcoming conferences in 2016 where leadership, science and community meet for advancing prevention, treatment and management of HIV, viral hepatitis and sexual health.
News | 28 July 2016 | On World Hepatitis Day, with two months leading to the 10th Australasian Viral Hepatitis 2016 Conference held in the Gold Coast, Queensland from 29 September to 1 October–hear, learn and be inspired from a multidisciplinary delegation who will be sharing research, experiences and best practices in the areas of their expertise.
News | 4 August 2016 | A ROADSHOW event showcasing new approaches to HIV treatment and its prevention was rolled out over two weeks across 8 locations in Queensland from 25 July to 4 August, 2016.