Saskatchewan has the highest rate of HIV in Canada, but it doesn’t have to be this way.
Addictions and HIV go hand-in-hand. Injection drug use is the largest driver of HIV infection in our province.
Combatting stigma, exploring and expanding harm reduction solutions to keep communities safe, and encouraging everyone to know their status through regular, routine HIV testing, are central to turning the tide on our province’s HIV epidemic.
Treatments for HIV have come a long way. With proper management, people infected with HIV can live healthy, normal lifespans. Modern medications are tolerable, safe and fully covered under Saskatchewan’s universal health system.
Knowing your status and beginning medication to suppress the HIV virus protects communities too. Once treatments have successfully driven the virus in a person’s bloodstream down to undetectable levels, they can no longer transmit HIV to anyone else. This coupled with harm reduction strategies like needle exchanges, methadone clinics, and safe injections sites, will change the course of HIV in our province.
Harm reduction is a solution that not only saves lives but also reduces strain on the overall health system. The lifetime costs of a person living with HIV can exceed one million dollars. The return on investment resulting from comparatively far less expensive harm reduction strategies is both economical and community-focused.
There are solutions – there is hope.
Saskatchewan’s registered nurses are committed to working with all community partners to fight this preventable epidemic.
LEARN MORE: Let’s break the stigma together – https://makingthedifference.ca/hiv
WATCH: Learn more about harm reduction – https://youtu.be/WqnXQB64XTc
HIV testing location near you: https://www.saskatchewan.ca/residents/health/accessing-health-care-services/health-care-facilities
Need support or have questions? Contact any of the organizations below: