Prevention in Focus

Spring 2019 

In case you missed it…

Recent Canadian and international online resources for service providers.

CATIE resources

Interviews from the Canadian Symposium on Hepatitis C Virus

While at the 7th Canadian Symposium on Hepatitis C Virus, hosted by the Canadian Network on Hepatitis C (CanHepC), CATIE had the opportunity to record short video interviews with leading Canadian and international hepatitis C experts.

Peer health navigation: scope of practice, roles and responsibilities

This webinar from CATIE and Positive Living B.C. looks at the process of identifying core peer health navigator roles and responsibilities, as well as the responsibilities of the agency in developing a clear peer health navigator scope of practice.

Eliminating hepatitis C among people who use drugs

This webinar from CATIE and the International Network on Hepatitis in Substance Users (INHSU) spotlights key discussions and findings from the INHSU 2018 conference and the HEP-C Community Summit that took place in Portugal in September 2018.

Canada’s Progress on 90-90-90 Targets

This colourful infographic poster illustrates Canada’s progress on achieving the 90-90-90 targets for HIV testing, treatment and viral suppression, based on 2016 estimates from the Public Health Agency of Canada.

HIV/AIDS in Canada

This colourful infographic poster illustrates recent statistics and information on HIV/AIDS in Canada taken from 2016 estimates from the Public Health Agency of Canada.


A pilot study of home-based PrEP monitoring

Researchers in Boston, San Francisco and St. Louis collaborated in a pilot study of “remote laboratory and behavioural monitoring designed to replace routine quarterly follow-up visits with home care to reduce the patient and provider burden.” Results from the study of 57 people were very encouraging, and the researchers are now in the process of launching a larger randomized study to confirm their results.

Canada makes some progress on HIV but much work lies ahead

A new report from the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) shows that Canada is moving forward to reach its 90-90-90 goals. It exceeds some of these targets in federal prisons, but falls behind in First Nations.

Smartphone intervention found helpful for young men taking PrEP

U.S. researchers developed a text messaging service, called PrEP mate, to increase PrEP adherence. Healthcare providers used PrEPmate to send messages and reminders to young gbMSM using PrEP in Chicago as part of a trial comparing PrEPmate to the standard of care. Men in the PrEPmate arm were significantly more likely to take PrEP as prescribed and attend appointments compared to men who received the standard of care.

Canadians’ awareness, knowledge and attitudes related to sexually transmitted and blood-borne infections

A 2018 survey asked 2,452 Canadians about sexually transmitted and blood-borne infections. The survey, which is performed regularly on behalf of the Public Health Agency of Canada, included questions about knowledge, awareness and attitudes. The survey found that most Canadians have a low to moderate knowledge of HIV and hepatitis C and that stigmatizing attitudes toward people with HIV and hepatitis C persist. The survey also found that perceived risk of HIV and hepatitis C and testing for these infections among Canadians is low.

Programming Connection resources


PositiveLinks is a mobile intervention for people with HIV. It uses an app that provides participants with two-way communication (e.g. daily queries related to stress), tailored educational resources, appointment reminders and a community message board. A pilot study showed significant improvements in care engagement, as well as significant improvements in CD4 and viral load counts.


EASY HCV-test was a point-of-care hepatitis C testing initiative in an Italian dental clinic. Offering hepatitis C screening in dental offices can be an effective way to increase diagnoses. The program trained dental hygienists to perform the tests and provide pre- and post-test counselling.

Making the Links

Making the Links is a program from the Hassle Free Clinic in Toronto, Ontario. The program seeks to improve the health of gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (gbMSM) by addressing internal and external barriers to wellness through short-term supportive counselling and service navigation within the community. The program provides support, counselling and referrals for gbMSM who test positive for HIV or HIV-negative gbMSM who engage in behaviours that pose a high risk of HIV infection.


WelTel is an mHealth (mobile health) intervention for people with HIV out of the Oak Tree Clinic in Vancouver, B.C. WelTel uses two-way text messaging to connect people with HIV to their healthcare providers. A study of the program indicates significantly improved adherence to antiretroviral therapy and viral load suppression in a sample of predominantly marginalized women.

Positive Self-Management Program

The Positive Self-Management Program is an interactive six-week program for people living with HIV developed by the Self-Management Resource Center. Program participants and peer leaders meet weekly for a couple of hours so that participants can learn tools and skills to help them manage their overall health.

Canadian resources

HIV in Canada—Surveillance Report, 2017

This report from the Public Health Agency of Canada provides a descriptive overview of the epidemiology of all reported diagnoses of HIV in Canada, up to the end of 2017. It is divided by province/territory, sex, age group, exposure category and race/ethnicity. Data on immigration medical screening results for HIV, as well as the number of infants perinatally exposed to HIV and the proportion of these infants receiving ART, are also presented.

HIV in Canada: 2017 surveillance highlights

This infographic from the Public Health Agency of Canada provides a summary of the epidemiology of all reported diagnoses of HIV in Canada, up to the end of 2017.

Evidence for optimal HIV screening and testing intervals in HIV-negative individuals from various risk groups: A systematic review

This systematic review from the Public Health Agency of Canada examines the current evidence on HIV testing intervals in HIV-negative individuals from various risk groups and assesses the potential harms of different testing frequencies alongside patients’ values and preferences associated with them.

Opioid-related harms in Canada – December 2018

This infographic from health Canada provides an overview of national data on opioid-related harms and deaths.

HIV factsheet: Screening and testing

This factsheet from the Public Health Agency of Canada gives information on HIV screening and testing in Canada and includes sections on risk factors, who should be screened and the signs and symptoms of HIV.

HIV factsheet: Types of HIV tests

This factsheet from the Public Health Agency of Canada lists the types of HIV tests available in Canada.

HIV factsheet: Biomedical prevention of HIV: PrEP and PEP

This factsheet from the Public Health Agency of Canada provides an overview of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP), with information on these HIV prevention medications, when to take each medication, and who should be considered for PrEP or PEP.

Reaching underserved populations: Leveraging point-of-care tests for sexually transmitted and blood-borne infections to explore new program options in Canada: Review of the evidence

This evidence review from the National Collaborating Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCCID) supports national efforts to improve STBBI screening and support awareness building for equitable access to and uptake of new diagnostic technologies for STBBIs. The review is intended to summarize point-of-care technologies and devices that are currently used, on the market, approved or available in Canada, or in the pipeline.

Canadians' awareness, knowledge and attitudes related to sexually transmitted and blood-borne infections: 2018 findings report

The 2018 survey from EKOS Research Associates, prepared for the Public Health Agency of Canada, asks Canadians questions about awareness, knowledge, attitudes, and behaviours related to sexually transmitted and blood-borne infections (STBBI). Evidence gathered through this survey is intended to enhance the capacity of service providers and other stakeholders to reduce the health impact of STBBIs in Canada by 2030.


This animated video on HIV treatment from the Ontario Gay Men’s Sexual Health Alliance (GMSH) touches on the importance of connecting gay men and other men who have sex with men to care and treatment. This video is part of The Sex You Want campaign and GMSH’s ongoing effort to promote the message of U=U, Undetectable=Untransmittable.

HIV testing and diagnosis in Ontario, 2017

This factsheet from the Ontario HIV Epidemiology and Surveillence Initiative (OHESI) summarizes the number of HIV tests and new HIV diagnoses in Ontario in 2017.

Ontario AIDS Network (OAN) toolkit on U=U

OAN has published a thorough and accessible U=U position statement and toolkit, which contains printable, poster-quality pages with key messages for display or for sharing with staff and clients.

Transforming our response to sexual and reproductive health

This fact sheet from the Native Women's Association of Canada is intended to give service providers a background on trauma-informed care, why it is important and tips on how to provide it.

Draft Core Principles of comprehensive sexual health education

The Sex Information & Education Council of Canada (SIECCAN) has released the draft Core Principles for the Canadian Guidelines for Sexual Health Education, which are currently under revision. The revised Guidelines will include Core Principles that provide the basis for the development and delivery of comprehensive sexual health education. The draft Core Principles were developed by the Canadian Guidelines for Sexual Health Education Working Group.

Toronto Community Hep C Program Peer Manual

A guide and a resource from the Toronto Community Hep C Program for engaging with clients beyond service provision in a harm reduction setting. It also contains the peer training program curriculum and other helpful documents related to training and employment of peers.

Support toolkit for people living with HIV or hepatitis C

This toolkit from Interior Health in BC provides practical guidance and tools to assist community-based organizations or groups to deliver social and emotional peer support services to people living with HIV and/or hepatitis C and includes a section on stigma.

Evidence-informed decision making (EIDM) casebook Issue 2

Published by the National Collaborating Centre for Methods and Tools (NCCMT), this issue includes nine stories from Canadian public health professionals that demonstrate the use of evidence-informed decision making (EIDM) in a wide range of public health activities, either using evidence to inform a program or intervention, or building capacity for EIDM. The stories describe the initiatives, implementation, evaluation, and lessons learned from using evidence in practice, or building capacity for EIDM.

Improve access to naloxone in federal prisons

This brief info sheet from the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network outlines the benefits of allowing federal prisoners access to naloxone in their cells.

Testing innovation: Addressing gaps and inspiring innovation in STBBI testing in Canada

This report from the Canadian Public Health Association (CPHA) summarizes the pre-conference session held at Public Health 2018 focused on addressing gaps in STBBI testing through innovative technology and/or service delivery.

Human papillomavirus (HPV) and the HPV vaccine: Information for health educators

This guide from SIECCAN is intended to provide educators with up-to-date information on HPV research and vaccination recommendations.

Addressing HPV-related cancer risk among adult women: A guide for health care providers

This guide from SIECCAN provides healthcare providers with information on HPV, HPV-related cancers among adult women, and the importance of HPV vaccination in this population. It also includes advice on how to communicate with women about HPV-related cancer prevention and the HPV vaccine.

International resources

Expert consensus statement on the science of HIV in the context of criminal law

The expert consensus statement was co-authored by 20 of the world’s leading HIV scientists to describe current evidence on HIV transmission, treatment effectiveness and forensics so that HIV-related science may be better understood in criminal law contexts.

HIV and the law: Risks, rights and health: Supplement

This supplement from the Global Commission on HIV and the Law highlights developments since 2012 in science, technology, law, geopolitics, and funding that affect people living with or at risk from HIV and its co-infections. The recommendations add to and amplify those of the Commission’s 2012 report Risks, Rights & Health.

Understanding U=U for women living with HIV: ICASO community brief

This community brief from the International Council of AIDS Service Organizations (ICASO) looks at U=U in relation to women living with HIV. It aims to capture the voices of women from around the world living with HIV.

EMIS 2017 community report Volume 1

The European MSM Internet Survey 2017 (EMIS), the largest international and multi-language study on gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men, took place between October 2017 and the end of January 2018. The survey included the participation of 6,049 Canadian men. This community report provides the first feedback on the results.