Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant said the results show the State is on track
to achieving its goal of virtually eliminating HIV transmission by 2020.
data continues to show that efforts under the NSW HIV Strategy 2016-2020 to
prevent the spread of HIV are having a significant and positive impact,” Dr
“I’m also very pleased to see that 97 per cent
of HIV-positive people who attended public clinics from April to June this year
for HIV management then went on to receive treatment, which is only possible if
a person is able to keep to a regime of daily medication.”
In 2018-19, NSW Health is investing $21.9
million in services to strengthen HIV testing, treatment and prevention.
Health was notified of 60 new cases of HIV infection from April to June this
year, down from the average of 82.4 cases for the same quarter from the past
five years, according to the NSW HIV Strategy Data Report
– Quarter 2.
was a 24 per cent reduction in the number of newly diagnosed cases among men
having sex with other men (MSM) and a 30 per cent decrease in heterosexual
The declining results coincide with a six per
cent increase in the number of HIV tests compared with the same period last
year, with 147,464 tests carried out in in the April-June quarter, compared
with 138,592 last year.
there has been a 10 per cent rise from 60 to 66 in the number of overseas-born MSM newly diagnosed with HIV in the
period from January to June 2018.
Despite improvements in access and testing,
two-thirds of newly diagnosed MSM had also not had an HIV test in the 12 months
prior to diagnosis.
NSW Health is working with key partners to
provide a mix of innovative testing options as well as education and peer
support in multiple languages to better engage overseas-born MSM in HIV prevention
and testing services.
The highly successful NSW Health EPIC-NSW
trial made PrEP available to 9,477 people at risk of HIV from 1 March 2016 to
30 April 2018. PrEP is now available on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme
(PBS) following its listing on April 1, 2018.
Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is the use of
antiretroviral drugs traditionally used to treat HIV infection, to prevent the
infection in those at high risk of the virus.
PBS listing has made the drug available to Australians at high or medium
risk of HIV transmission from a community pharmacy, with a doctor’s prescription
and standard co-payment.