BASHH applauds Liverpool becoming the latest UK city to join the HIV Fast-Track Cities programme
30th November 2018
The British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH) is delighted with the news that Liverpool will be joining the international HIV Fast-Track Cities programme.
The announcement, made by Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson on the eve of the 30th World AIDS Day, outlined a commitment to accelerate and scale-up support for people living with HIV and those most at risk within the city.
Liverpool represents the latest UK city to sign up the Fast-Track Cities programme, following in the footsteps of Brighton, London and Manchester. The programme encourages cities across the globe to meet key goals that will help to end the HIV epidemic. These include achieving the UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets, increasing the utilisation of combination HIV prevention services, eradicating stigma and discrimination of those affected by HIV and establishing a common, web-based platform to support the real-time monitoring of progress.
To help mark the announcement, a local HIV awareness campaign, supported by Public Health Liverpool, will continue throughout December and January, on social media and dating apps. It will aim to raise awareness about HIV testing amongst all Liverpool residents aged 16 and over, with a particular focus on key high-risk groups.
Testing is available locally through sexual health services and GPs. For further details visit www.sexualhealthliverpool.co.uk
Free postal kits for home testing are also available for those at higher-risk of HIV at www.test.hiv
Commenting on the announcement, BASHH Media Chair, and consultant in Sexual Health & HIV and Clinical Lead at the Liverpool Centre for Sexual Health, Dr Mark Lawton said:
“Treatment for HIV is so effective it leads to a completely normal life expectancy and renders individuals un-infectious. The remaining challenge is diagnosing everyone so they can access this treatment. HIV testing is free and completely confidential. Know your status. Get tested.”
BASHH President Dr Olwen Williams also commented:
“Political commitment and community engagement are essential if we are to eradicate the stigma and discrimination that can prevent people accessing testing and support. We are therefore delighted that Liverpool is signing up to the international Fast-Track Cities programme and has committed to doing all it can to help eliminate HIV.”