Date lodged: 19 March 2018
To ask the Scottish Government what steps it is taking to reduce barriers and stigma regarding (a) accessing prevention and (b) testing and treatment for HIV and blood borne viruses, particularly among hard-to-reach or marginalised people and groups.
Answered by: Aileen Campbell 17 April 2018
The Scottish Government is funding a range of Third Sector organisations including Waverley Care and the Scottish Drugs Forum to challenge HIV and hepatitis C related stigma, promote good sexual health, tackle health inequalities and improve early access to testing and treatment. This work specifically targets the most vulnerable groups such as men who have sex with men, those who inject drugs, Scotland’s African community, young people with learning difficulties and sex workers.
We have also asked NHS Boards to consider using innovative approaches to delivering treatment and testing services, including integration with harm reduction and recovery services for people who inject drugs. A Short Life Working Group on HIV testing is currently considering new and innovative approaches and will make recommendations this year.