National BBV & STI Surveillance & Monitoring Report 2013

This report provides an annual account of progress against the goals and objectives of Australia’s National Blood‑Borne Virus (BBV) and Sexually Transmissible Infections (STIs) Strategies.

In April 2010, a suite of National Strategies for the prevention and management of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), sexually transmissible infections, hepatitis B and hepatitis C, including in Aboriginal and Torres Strait
Islander communities were endorsed by the Australian Health Ministers’ Conference. The National Strategies cover the period 2010 – 2013.

The aims of these National Strategies are to:

  • Reduce the transmission of HIV, STIs, hepatitis B and hepatitis C
  • Reduce the morbidity, mortality and personal and social impacts they cause.

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
  • Although the hepatitis B vaccination program is successfully reaching coverage of over 90% among infants, there are still an estimated 1,770 cases of hepatitis B occurring annually. The modelled estimate of
    hepatitis B incidence in Australia has remained relatively stable over the period of the national strategies.
  • The weak evidence available suggests that hepatitis C incidence is stable to decreasing over the time frame of the national strategies.
  • Gonorrhoea is a two‑pronged epidemic: among men who have sex with men (MSM) in urban areas and among young Aboriginal people in remote areas. Uncertainties over trends in gonorrhoea testing make notification data a poor indicator for incidence. However, the available evidence for gonorrhoea incidence suggests that incidence has increased for MSM over the past four years.
  • Chlamydia notifications have increased substantially, in alignment with increased testing. The available evidence for chlamydia incidence is weak, but suggestive that incidence has been stable or slightly increasing over the past four years.