Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is the virus that causes AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome). This virus attacks the immune system, which is the body’s defence against disease. In Australia, there have been approximately 35,287 people diagnosed with HIV from 1987 to 2013. Activities such as sex without a condom and sharing injecting equipment may put you at risk of contracting HIV.
There is currently no cure for HIV, however there are a range of effective treatments available in Australia to delay or prevent the progression of HIV to AIDS.
NSW Health released the NSW HIV Strategy 2016-2020 on 1 December 2012 which refocuses efforts to dramatically drive down the number of new HIV infections. The goal is to virtually eliminate HIV transmission by 2020 through advances in HIV testing and treatment and the continued promotion of safe behaviours.
North Coast HARP provides a range of HIV services to the community including:
- HIV education and prevention information
- HIV testing
- HIV treatment and management
- HIV Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP)- a course of medication that can stop you from becoming HIV positive after you have been exposed to the virus. You need to commence treatment within 72 hours of exposure. 1800 PEP NOW (1800 737 669) for more information
- Pre Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) – the use of antiretroviral drugs, taken by HIV negative people to prevent HIV infection. For further information about PrEP click link above.
All services are confidential. Medicare cards may be required for specialist services.
Services available at these locations
Coffs Harbour Health Campus
345 Pacific Hwy
Coffs Harbour 2450
Phone 02 6656 7865
Kempsey Community Health (Clinic 33)
Phone 02 6561 2790
Port Macquarie Health Campus
Morton Street, Port Macquarie
Phone 02 6588 2750