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Queensland government hands out $25m in HIV and STI funding

Date

Cameron Atfield

A health worker draws blood for testing.

A health worker draws blood for testing. Photo: Schalk van Zuydam

The Queensland government will provide $25.1 million over three years to help community groups combat HIV, sexually transmitted diseases and other blood-borne viruses.

Health Minister Lawrence Springborg said the funding, spread over four grants, was awarded after 15 applicants from community-based agencies were assessed.

Four of those applicants – the Ethnic Communities Council of Queensland, the University of Queensland, Hepatitis Queensland and Queensland Positive People – joined forces to create the Consortium for Queensland and received a single grant.

The other three successful grant applications came from Queensland Injectors Health Network, Respect Inc and Youth Service Providers Inc.

Mr Springborg said the non-government organisations would receive $8.4 million a year in the areas of prevention and testing, treatment and management, and workforce development.

"The NGO sector plays a significant role in the delivery of community-based care for populations at risk," he said.

"This process is about cementing their funding and coordinating their activities for the next three years.

"Each of the successful applicants has expertise and strong links to the at-risk populations.

"They work with government agencies, but with added capacity to respond and adapt to specific community needs."

The new funding contracts will come into effect on October 1.

Among those to miss out on funding were the Pharmaceutical Guild of Australia, which received separate funding for needle supply, and Anglicare.

It is understood Anglicare's submission, which dealt with palliative care funding, was unsuccessful because fewer people were dying of AIDS.

Anglicare declined to comment.

Mr Springborg said the service agreements with the NGOs were to reduce the transmission of HIV, viral hepatitis and other sexually transmitted diseases and also minimise their impact through preventative measures.

The agreements would also increase access to testing and increase the treatment of the diseases.

"These successful organisations will contribute on the front line of Queensland's response to sexually transmissible infections and blood-borne viruses," Mr Springborg said.

"Better coordination and communication between government and non-government agencies and between providers and the general community will strengthen our capacity to deliver effective, outcome-focussed programs."

The public "request for offer" grant process was adopted from the recommendations of former Auditor-General Glenn Poole in the wake of the $16.6 million "fake Tahitian prince" scandal.

It was Queensland's single largest fraud case, for which former Queensland Health employee Joel Morehu-Barlow is serving a 14-year jail term.

25 comments so far

  • Would be interesting to see some health dept data, on just where these diseases fit on the scale of most urgent health needs for Australians. Avoiding sexually transmitted diseases, in particular, is actually REALLY easy - don't sleep around! Where's the extra millions for say hypertension or metabolic conditions, these will impact pretty much everyone at some point - many of those treatments have no seriously improved in decades!

    Commenter
    Robo
    Location
    Keen watcher of biotech!
    Date and time
    August 31, 2014, 2:40AM
    • "Avoiding sexually transmitted diseases, in particular, is actually REALLY easy -- don't sleep around!Where's the extra millions for say hypertension...."

      </ignorant generalisation>Avoiding essential (primary) hypertention, in particular, is actually REALLY easy - don't get too fat, get exercise, drink less alcohol and don't eat the wrong foods.</ignorant generalisation> See what I did there?

      One does not need to "sleep around" to contract an STI.Just one sexual partner is enough to be exposed to an STI.

      Prevention IS better than cure and safe sex is on par with healthy eating and physical activity. Education and advocacy is cheaper than treatment.

      Commenter
      Observer
      Date and time
      September 01, 2014, 11:31AM
  • Would have been easier to just not cut funding to them in the first place - but now with an election on the horizon it appears the LNP are heros for all the good work (lies) they are doing.

    Commenter
    Science is still here, just nobody listens
    Date and time
    August 31, 2014, 7:15AM
    • Consistency has never been a feature of the LNP. Opportunism has been. It was opportunism that inspired the cuts to sexual diseases education and funding, pandering to their Abbott-like idealist supporters professing abstinence (and conveniently ignoring Abbott's own prenuptial sexual activities including his belief he had fathered a child and chose not to marry the mother). And it is opportunism that inspires the LNP to announce funding on election eve, in the face of rising STD rates. Pathetic performances all round.

      Commenter
      Judith
      Date and time
      August 31, 2014, 12:45PM
  • Public Money out to the Private Sector , more ideology, it will be interesting to see which ones are Religious Organizations ( or who are the favoured LNP friends winning these contracts) , who just might turn some people away and other ones who treat all comers with out any Religion or Ideology

    Commenter
    John
    Location
    Wynnum
    Date and time
    August 31, 2014, 7:59AM
    • A quick search will show that none of the funded organisations listed are religious in the slightest.

      Commenter
      Jason
      Location
      Camp Hill
      Date and time
      August 31, 2014, 1:08PM
    • Jason , hope your right , what this Government says and does are always two different things , I don't trust them at all , they just don't tell the truth

      Commenter
      John
      Location
      Wynnum
      Date and time
      August 31, 2014, 5:41PM
    • Please note John also said 'or friends of the LNP'. The CEO of Qld Positive People, who received a large chunk of the money. is a hand picked member of the Ministerial Advisory Committee on HIV/AIDS. Don't you think there is a huge conflict of interest right there? Money for mates!!

      Commenter
      Bobalong
      Location
      Brisbane
      Date and time
      August 31, 2014, 10:11PM
    • Maybe QPP and the group of organisations just had the best application, covering what they were looking for.

      Commenter
      James
      Location
      New Farm
      Date and time
      September 01, 2014, 10:43AM
    • I would have thought the CEO of Qld Positive People is the exact person to be on the Ministerial Advisory Committee on HIV/AIDS. I don't think that is a conflict of interest, I think that is simply logical.

      Commenter
      Bungalow Bill
      Location
      Ashgrove
      Date and time
      September 01, 2014, 2:27PM

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