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Treatment, Peers and More! Hep C Resources in BC Report available now

May 9, 2018 by Madeline Gallard, Project Coordinator, Pacific Hepatitis C Network

The Hep C in BC Resources Project Pacific Hepatitis C Network (PHCN) is happy to report that our Hep C in BC Resources project has drawn to a successful close. This project ran from last fall to the end of March 2018. Given the recent availability of effective hepatitis C treatments with minimal side effects…

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“I’ve literally never heard of dental dams”: STI knowledge among lesbian and bisexual teenage girls

April 18, 2018 by Dr. Jennifer Wolowic, Managing Director of Stigma and Resilience Among Vulnerable Youth Centre, UBC School of Nursing

Research The Stigma and Resilience Among Vulnerable Youth Centre at the UBC School of Nursing collaborated with the Centre of Innovative Health in the United States to research STI risk and prevention knowledge among young women.  Online focus groups were conducted with 160 lesbian and bisexual teen girls from across the United States, with a…

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PrEP-Stigma: What can we learn from Toronto’s ‘first wave’ of PrEP users?

April 4, 2018 by Dr. Daniel Grace, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, and Dr. Darrell H.S. Tan, St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto

Background While barriers to access remain, PrEP is becoming increasingly available across Canada. We set out to learn from the experiences of gay men in Toronto who were part of the ‘first wave’ of PrEP users in Canada. Methods For this qualitative study, we recruited 16 participants who were part of a PrEP demonstration project…

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Syndemic service integration: Are sexual health clinics appropriate settings for addressing clients’ unmet mental health care needs?

February 14, 2018 by Travis Salway, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, UBC School of Population and Public Health, BC Centre for Disease Control

Background Sexually transmitted and blood-borne infections (STBBI), and mental health and substance misuse problems co-occur at elevated rates in particular socially-marginalized sub-populations (e.g., sexual and gender minorities). This is primarily due to socio-structural processes of discrimination, exclusion, and segregation. These overlapping epidemics, or ‘syndemics’, are exacerbated by challenges these same sub-populations face in accessing culturally-safe…

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Evidence review: online interventions hold promise for addressing STBBI among young gay, bisexual and other MSM

November 22, 2017 by Rod Knight, Research Scientist, BC Centre on Substance Use

Background Policy makers and intervention strategists are increasingly aware that the Internet provides opportunities to meet young people “where they are at.” For example, young gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men (gbMSM) represent a population that might benefit from online interventions that address sexually transmitted and blood borne infections, including HIV…

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Estimating the size of the population of men who have sex with men in Metro Vancouver

October 5, 2017 by Ashleigh Rich, PhD Candidate, University of British Columbia School of Population & Public Health; BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS

Background Men who have sex with men (MSM) are disproportionately affected by HIV across Canada, provincially in British Columbia (BC) and locally in Vancouver. In BC, MSM make up about half of new HIV infections as well about half of those living with HIV. Provincially, the HIV epidemic among MSM is concentrated in Metro Vancouver,…

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Harm reduction to prevent Hepatitis C reinfection: evidence from the largest study to-date

August 25, 2017 by Nazrul Islam, University of British Columbia and Harvard University

Background The cure rate of Hepatitis C (HCV) treatment with newer direct-acting antiviral (DAA) agents is very high (>95%). These treatments are also well-tolerated, bringing significant optimism to expanding treatment options to include more people at risk, particularly people who inject drugs (PWID). Barriers to accessing treatment by PWID have been widely reported, which has…

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HIV stigma and suicide among gay and bisexual men living with HIV

August 9, 2017 by Olivier Ferlatte, PhD, post-doctoral research fellow, Men’s Health Research Program, University of British Columbia

Background High rates of suicide have been reported among people living with HIV, but there is little research that looks specifically at suicide among gay and bisexual men who are HIV positive. Existing studies only look at trends and do not explore why suicide is higher in this community, and more importantly, what can be…

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Substance use, social disparities and the evolution of HIV/HCV infections in British Columbia

July 17, 2017 by Zahid A. Butt, School of Population and Public Health, University of British Columbia, Vancouver BC

Background Hepatitis C (HCV) and HIV are global public health concerns. By the end of 2014 in Canada, an estimated 230,000–450,000 (0.66%–1.3%) individuals were infected with HCV and about 75,500 were living with HIV. Both HCV and HIV are associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Social conditions and other infections (e.g. addictions, mental illness, HBV,…

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Estimated sizes of key populations for HIV and HCV in BC

April 4, 2017 by David Moore, Physician Lead HIV Program, PHSA, and Annelies Becu, HIV Project Coordinator, PHSA, and Janice Duddy, Director of Evaluation and Community-Based Research, Pacific AIDS Network

Background It is well understood that a few key populations in British Columbia bear a disproportionately high burden of HIV and hepatitis C compared to the general population. These key populations include gay men and other men who have sex with men (MSM), people who use injection drugs (PWID), and heterosexuals who engage in high-risk…

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