Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)

The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) causes an infection that affects the immune system. The virus is transmitted through body fluids. More information on HIV can be found here.

HIV used to affect the ability of someone to live a long and healthy life. Today, medications that suppress the virus mean a person can then live a nearly normal lifespan and are extremely unlikely to pass the virus on to others. This concept, known as HIV Treatment as Prevention, signals the beginning of the end of a 30-year global epidemic.

Policy

In January 2013, B.C. released From Hope to Health: Towards an AIDS-free Generation. This strategy guides B.C. health authorities in incorporating HIV Treatment as Prevention into existing prevention activities, such as harm reduction. This is being done province wide under the Seek and Treat for Optimal Prevention of HIV/AIDS (STOP HIV/AIDS) program, which builds on a successful pilot that ran in Vancouver and Prince George.

This strategy has five goals:

  1. Reduce the number of new HIV infections in British Columbia.
  2. Improve the quality, effectiveness and reach of HIV prevention services.
  3. Diagnose those living with HIV as early as possible in the course of their infection.
  4. Improve the quality and reach of HIV support services for those living with and vulnerable to HIV.
  5. Reduce the burden of advanced HIV infection on the health system

This strategic policy, and reports on progress towards the goals, milestones and targets can be found below:

Additional information on the STOP HIV/AIDS program and its outcomes can be found here.

Resources

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