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NAPWHA News Winter 2011

Newsletter • 8 July 2011

Welcome to the Winter edition of NAPWHA News. It has been a busy few months since our last edition. We look back on our work and include some information on upcoming events and provide updates on our current projects including:

NAPWHA Board Update

The next scheduled NAPWHA Board meeting is set for August 13th.

The AGM is scheduled for 18th & 19th November in Sydney

The Special General Meeting(SGM) in April 2012 will be held in Melbourne.

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NAPWHA Research Unit

Assistant Director (Research Programs) Sean Slavin recently presented to the ASHMAustralasian Society for HIV Medicine. The peak Australasian organisation representing the medical and health sector in HIV/AIDS and related areas. Workforce Development Program – writing abstracts workshop and provided an extensive overview of NAPWHA’s research activities to the April SGM. Contact Sean

NAPWHA also collaborates with ARCSHSAustralian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society, part of La Trobe University in Melbourne. For further information see on the revision of the HIV Futures survey instrument. Read more about ARCSHS. NAPWHA is a co-investigatorA medical researcher in charge of carrying out a clinical trial's protocol. with the HIV surveillance program of the Kirby Institute and continues to collaborate with the Insitute to further develop the HIV population and jurisdictional distribution modelling project. The data from this project is critical to the HIV sector’s ongoing advocacy, planning and policy activity. Read the report Mapping HIV Outcomes

NAPWHA has assisted with recruitment to the Strategic Timing of AntiretroviralA medication or other substance which is active against retroviruses such as HIV. Treatment (START) study and continues to represent the Australian community through the International Strategic Trials Network (INSIGHT). For details of other clinical trials go to the National Clinical Trials database.

NAPWHA is a partner on a number of grant applications with various researchers around the country and contributes to the Australasian HIV observational Database (AHOD) surveillance program through membership of the Steering Committee. Read more about AHOD.

NAPWHA has concluded the data collection for the ‘HIV Stigma Audit’, evaluating the experience of HIV stigma among PLHIVPerson (or people) Living with HIV. This term is now preferred over the older PLWHA.. Further progress, including analysis and development of resources to support PLHIV resilience will be completed in coming month

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Treatments and the Treataware Project

NAPWHA President Robert Mitchell and Jesse Hooper (QPP) attended the High Level UN Meetings on HIV in New York in May, UNGASS. Read more about the High Level UN Meetings.

NAPWHA Executive Director Jo Watson attended the CONFERENCE on RETROVIRUSES and OPPORTUNISTIC INFECTIONS (CROI) in Boston in March. Read more about CROI in Positive Living.

Approval has been obtained from July 1st for Medicare funding of Sculptra injection procedures for facial lypoatrophy. Read more about approval of Sculptra in Positive Living.

NAPWHA circulated a Media Release on the 13th of May, welcoming the announcement that the HPTN 052 trial has found that HIV antiretroviral treatment significantly reduces the risk of HIV transmission. Read the Media Release.

TREATAWARE, in collaboration with the Australasian Society of HIV Medicine (ASHM) is providing an Update Short Course in HIV Medicine, aimed at attracting participants who are new to the community based sector. The Short Course is scheduled for Thursday 14 & Friday 15 July 2011 in Sydney. Registrations are now open. Read more about the Course.

The next CHIN WAG event is scheduled for Cairns on 23rd of June. Read more about the Cairns CHIN WAG.

A CHIN WAG event was conducted on the 19th of April in Melbourne. Fifty people attended the event who mostly found it "very funny & fun way of talking about the issues that concern us". The evening was hosted by celebrity Vanessa Wagner with "tan deluxe dusty ochre, and a hint of sun damaged orange around the eyes and matching shoes'.

Vanessa fielded a range of questions from the audience that included discussion on the latest guidelines for commencing anti-retroviral therapy, health, lifestyle, diet and exercise, wellbeing, relationships, mental health, sex, libido and complementary therapiesA broad range of healing philosophies, approaches, and therapies that Western (conventional) medicine does not commonly use to promote well-being or treat health conditions. Examples include acupuncture, herbs, Traditional Chinese Medicine, etc..

An HIV & YOUR BRAIN workshop was held in Sydney on 31 March. This successful workshop was well attended with over 40 participants from across the HIV community who heard presentations from an expert faculty including doctor, counsellor and Neuro-psychologist.

TREATAWARE also hosted a regular Treataware Outreach Network (TON) meeting in Sydney on 1 April.

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Positive Living

In this edition of POSITIVE LIVING, our cover story looks at "Working with your Doctor: finding the right one and making it work" – Adrian Ogier gives advice on how to build a good relationship with your HIV health care provider.

Also in this edition, in response to a friend’s passing remark, David Menadue asks four people living with HIV whether they think HIV really is such a big deal, anymore.

There are three pages of news including relevant outcomes from the recent Federal Budget, Neil McKellar-Stewart gives us some highlights from the CROI conference in Boston, Dr Louise Owen provides guidance for sero-discordant couples wishing to conceive, there’s also another tale from the network and a gentle yoga pose to add to your practice. Read POSITIVE LIVING online.

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NAPWHA and partners the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations (AFAOAustralian Federation of AIDS Organisations. AFAO is the peak non-government organisation representing Australia's community-based response to HIV/AIDS. AFAO's work includes education, policy, advocacy and international projects. ) made a joint submission to the Productivity Commission’s Disability Care and Support Draft report. Read the AFAO/NAPWHA submission.

NAPWHA Executive Director attended the Federal Budget lock-up and the organisation has responded to announcements about changes to the Disability Support Pension (DSP) made in the Budget. Read more about the changes to the DSP in Positive Living.

NAPWHA also welcomed news of the inclusion of funding for HIV Genotype testing in the Budget. Read more about the funding for Genotype Testing

NAPWHA is working closely with our sector partners the Australasian Society of HIV Medicine (ASHM)to review the HIV Testing Policy Guidelines. Read more about the HIV Testing Policy.

NAPWHA Special Representative David Menadue presented to the Australian Council Of Social Services (ACOSS) Conference on the cost impact of chronic and episodic illness. Read more on the ACOSS Conference.

NAPWHA Special Representative David Menadue also presented to the Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO) National Disability Insurance Scheme Congress (NDIS) in May on the impact of chronic and episodic illness. Read more on the NDIS Congress.

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NAPWHA Secretariat News

A delegation of 13 people from the Chinese Public Health Department visited the NAPWHA offices on 15 April as part of a field trip and familiarization tour of the Australian HIV sector. Sean Slavin, Adrian Ogier and Brent Beadle presented to the delegation on NAPWHA's work.

The NAPWHA secretariat has recently received a substantial artwork created by NAPWHA Board member Peter Fenoglio and kindly donated to the organisation. The artwork hangs proudly in the NAPWHA office and we take this opportunity to thank Peter for his most thoughtful gesture. See more of Peter's Fenoglio’s work on the POP Gallery website.

Due to an increase in the number of telephone inquiries coming through the NAPWHA secretariat, an enquiries database is being trialled to track and record issues of concern and interest in the community.

Jan Morley in now assisting Brent Beadle in the Treataware Project.

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NAPWHA Membership News

POSITIVE LIFE (NSW) has announced the appointment of Sonny Williams as their new CEO. Sonny has been Executive Officer of PLWHA Victoria since 2005. Read more on the Positive Life NSW website.

STRAIGHT ARROWS, NAPWHA Associate Member, has relocated with PLWHA (VICTORIA) into new premises. Read more on the Straight Arrows website.

NAPWHA hosted a Special General Meeting (SGM) in April. Agenda items included regular Staff, Board and Members’ reports and a range of workshops and discussions including; progress in strategies toward and HIV ‘cure’; a report on current HIV social research programs; HIV criminalisation issues and NAPWHA responses; a web-baqsedsocial marketing presentation; HIV treatments and research updates; presentation towards the UN High Level Meeting on HIV/AIDS in June and overview of current ANET/positive education. The after-hours NAPWHA event on Friday April 15th included a launch of the HIV sero-conversion report by Simon O'Connor (QPP) on behalf of the Research team lead by Garret Prestage from the Kirby Institute. Read the Seroconversion Report.

The NAPWHA women’s network has hosted two teleconferences over the autumn. The network has recently made a change to their name and will now be known as the National Network of Women Living with HIV. Accordingly, the network has developed a new logo and distributed a letter of invitation to promote the network and to raise the profile of their advocacy work. Read the letter of invitation and see the new logo.

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This newsletter was first published on 8 July 2011 — more than two years ago.

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