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Call for renewed effort to tackle HIV

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Despite progress in combating the spread of the HIV epidemic in England over the past 20 years, more work is needed to improve prevention and address the changing needs of the HIV positive population, a report says.

Building on Progress: enhancing the response to HIV in England by the Independent Advisory Group on Sexual Health and HIV suggests ways of revitalising government policy on HIV and AIDS, and explores how to give people living with HIV a greater voice in policy and service development.

It also considers the impact an ageing HIV positive population will have on social and healthcare. The improvements in medical treatment since the introduction of highly active anti-retroviral therapy mean people with HIV are living longer.

The report’s recommendations include achieving a national cross-governmental overview of HIV, addressing the needs of people living with HIV and tackling stigma and discrimination.

Derek Bodell, deputy chair of the Independent Advisory Group on Sexual Health and HIV and chair of the HIV sub-group, said: “We have been successful in the past because there has been consistent planning, co-ordination, listening and a dialogue across all groups involved in the field. This now needs to be increased again.”

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