Canada: Gains Slip Away in AIDS Work
December 10, 2008
In 2008-09, Canada will spend $84 million (US $66.8 million) domestically on HIV/AIDS, the most in the nation's history. But some of that money is being redirected from community-based efforts toward the Canadian HIV Vaccine Initiative. This approach, said Jirina Vlk, spokesperson from the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), "balances current prevention needs and a longer term investment necessary to find an effective vaccine."
Ottawa Public Health (OPH) estimates that six HIV infections are prevented annually by harm-reduction programs, though the number may be as high as 24.
"Ottawa has one of the highest rates of HIV among injection drug users, and since we've really put a focus on harm-reduction efforts, that number has come down. We have seen an effect of harm-reduction programs on the rates of HIV," said Roger Prasad, a sexual health supervisor at OPH.
According to the agency, 78 new infections were reported to OPH by the end of September, compared to 73 cases for all of 2005.
12.01.2008; Dale Smith
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.