The Newman Government has announced a significant restructure of the sexual health and HIV service resulting in the closure of the Brisbane and Redcliffe Sexual Health Clinics.
This service provides clinical, education, and psychological services in sexual health, sexually transmissible infections, and blood-borne viruses. The free, confidential service provided more than 11,000 consultations over the past year particularly to people under 25, members of the LGTBI community, sex workers and those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
The Clinic 2 HIV Unit will also significantly decrease services. This clinic provides vital HIV care and treatment for people living with HIV/AIDS and also undertakes essential HIV surveillance and other preventative health measures which protect the entire community. It currently provides care to over 700 HIV positive people.
Metro North Hospital and Health Service have suggested people who wish to access these services can go see their GP.
However, many patients are unable to afford the cost of a GP visit and few GP’s have approval to prescribe HIV medications.
This decision is also contrary to a statement from the Health Minister, Lawrence Springborg on 30th May 2012 which expressed the government’s determination to reverse the increase diagnosis rates of HIV in Queensland.
This is yet another blow to every Australian’s right to free public health services
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