National BBV & STI Surveillance and Monitoring Report 2016

This report provides an annual account of progress against the objectives of Australia’s National blood‑borne virus (BBV) and sexually transmissible infections (STIs) Strategies.

In June 2014, Australia’s federal, state and territory health ministers endorsed five new National Strategies for hepatitis B, hepatitis C, STIs, and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) together with a National Aboriginal and Torres
Strait Islander BBV and STI Strategy.

The targets and associated objectives of the National Strategies are to improve testing, treatment and uptake of preventative measures for hepatitis B, hepatitis C, STIs and HIV, and to reduce the incidence, morbidity, mortality and personal and social impacts they cause. Each objective has a series of measurable indicators for monitoring progress. The five National Strategies cover the period 2014 – 2017.

This report describes the targets, objectives and indicators of the National Strategies, and the level of progress being made in response. It provides measurement of the effectiveness of our national response and highlights areas requiring attention.

Key findings
  • At the end of 2015, an estimated 232,600 (range 190,738 to 283,781) people were living with chronic hepatitis B infection in Australia.
  • In Australia, most hepatitis C transmission occurs through unsafe injecting drug use practices, with hepatitis C antibody prevalence of 57% (estimated 43% chronic HCV) among people who inject drugs attending needle and syringe programs in Australia.
  • In Australia, gonorrhoea continues to be an infection primarily among men who have sex with men (most residing in urban settings), and of heterosexual Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in remote communities.
  • Using modelling data, there were an estimated 257,545 chlamydia infections in 15 – 29 year olds (245,216 – 264,706) in 2015.
  • During 2015, an estimated 25,313 (22,513 – 28,281) people were living with HIV and the majority (90%) or 22,694 were diagnosed (22,480 – 25,050).