OptTEST Final Conference
Tools developed to optimise HIV testing and linkage to care
The last OptTEST Newsletter has now been sent and this is marking the end of OptTEST. A very sincere thank you to all partners , collaborators and followers for your support and engagement in the project!
What are the barriers to HIV testing and treatment access – and how do we overcome them?
Read the great NAM interview with Lisa Power on her work in OptTEST on legal and regulatory barriers here.
Optimizing HIV testing and Linkage to care in Spain was held 14 September 2017 at the National Center for Epidemiology, ISCIII, Madrid, Spain. The agenda is available here.
On 19 September 2017 the OptTEST final conference was held in Brussels to present policy relevant outcomes from the two EU-co financed projects OptTEST and Euro HIV Edat. Meting report and presentations will soon be available here.
On the 13-14 September 2017 a community training course was held in Berlin for selected activists. The aim was to address punitive and restrictive legal environments hindering early HIV diagnosis and linkage to care. The training drew on the OptTEST research, interventions and advocacy toolkit on legal and regulatory barriers.
On 10 July a meeting was held in Barcelona, Spain discussing HIV testing in Primary Care. Catalan initiatives for improving HIV testing in primary care were presented, as well as results from OptTEST and WP5 in particular on indicator condition guided testing and the review of specialty guidelines done in Spain.
OptTEST has arranged in collaboration with GAT and SER+, Portugal, two national stakeholder meetings in Lisbon: 5th of June 2017: Knowledge about HIV and implementation of HIV test in Primary Care; 6th of June 2017: Linkage to care: Current perspectives on data collection, barriers to linkage to care and retention with focus on key groups.
OptTEST tools developed to optimise HIV testing and linkage to care were launched at an evening reception 25 July in conjunction with IAS 2017 in Paris. Invitation and agenda available here.
Julia del Amo presented the OptTEST modeling work on cost-effectiveness of HIV testing approaches in Spain at the XVIII Spanish National Congress on AIDS and STIs held in Sevilla, Spain, 22-24 March 2017. The presentation is available here.
Guillaume Mabileau presented OptTEST results on "EFFECTIVENESS AND COST-EFFECTIVENESS OF HIV SCREENING STRATEGIES ACROSS EUROPE" at CROI in Seattle In February. The poster is available here.
The symposium was co-organized between OptTEST, Euro HIV EDAT and Chafea and had as its aim to foster dialogue, discussion and collaboration among EU co-financed projects and actions within the field of HIV, Hepatitis and TB. Pictures and presentations are available here.
Find all OptTEST posters and presentations from HepHIV 2017 Conference under publications.
Read about OptTEST at the HepHIV Conference in this newsletter. OptTEST partners will be presenting results in different sessions during the conference, and the last day is a symposium sponsored by OptTEST with special focus on optimization of testing and linkage to care.
Read about OptTEST national Continuum of Care meetings in Greece and Poland, national cost-effectiveness seminars in France, Spain and Estonia - and other activities and upcoming events here.
Now in its fourth year and the second time hepatitis testing has been included, European HIV-Hepatitis Testing Week run 18-25 November 2016. Testing week is spanning the length and breadth of the continent with partners participating from over 50 European countries. Over 500 organizations have signed up to unite for one week to increase awareness of the benefits of HIV and hepatitis testing.
OptTEST had a poster by Lisa Power on legal and regulatory barriers to HIV testing at HIV Drug Therapy, Glasgow 2016 and the outcomes of the work is described in this video clip.
On 14 and 15 October OptTEST co-organized the 1st Polish Workshop on the Continuum of Care for HIV. The aim was to create a platform for discussion on how to further strengthen the HIV Continuum of Care in Poland. The participants were national and international HIV clinicians, surveillance people and community organizations.
26th September the OptTEST and Positive Voice Greece held a stakeholder meeting in Athens, Greece, to discuss Linkage to care and national challenges in data collection. The meeting was hosted by Greek CDC (KEELPNO)
Read about OptTEST activities in the latest Newsletter
Check out this new database on legal and regulatory barriers to HIV testing, linkage to care and treatment access across Europe developed by OptTEST partner GNP+ and consultant Lisa Power in collaboration with NAM. The data stems from an online survey answered by 78 respondents covering 2/3 of the 53 WHO European countries. The data will be updated and coverage improved based on feedback from the users. The database can be found here
Read an interview with Ann Sullivan in EUROBulletin where she reflects on the changing direction of HIV testing approaches and discusses opportunities for normalising HIV testing and using community and indicator condition-guided testing strategies to reduce late diagnosis.
“Testing is the entry step to saving lives and must be fully accessible” Read the full OptTEST press release from Durban here.
The OptTEST 2nd annual meeting took place in Madrid at the National School of Health located at the ISCIII from 17-18 May. Partners and collaborators met to discuss progress, challenges and sustainability for the project, which is entering its third year.
Bratislava, 9 March 2016 Sara Croxford, Public Health England, presented OptTEST WP4 work with focus on the analysis made on the feasibility of using the HIV TESSy dataset (case-based reporting of all new diagnoses made in the WHO European Region) to monitor linkage to care in Europe. The meeting report can be found here.
Lisa Power presenting what works and what doesn't work in HIV testing at The European HIV Prevention Summit hosted by AVAC and EATG in Brussels, 29-31 January 2016 .
5 OptTEST posters were presented at EACS! They can be downloaded here.